Category Archives: Business

Costco And The Supersized Killer Cops

BAB's A List, Business, Criminal Injustice, Fascism, GUNS, Individual Rights

BY WILLIAM B. SCOTT

On July 10, 2010, Erik B. Scott, a 1994 U.S. Military Academy at West Point graduate with an MBA from Duke University, was shot to death by three Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (“Metro”) officers in front of a Las Vegas, NV, Costco big-box store. While many readers will recall that egregious, senseless murder, few know what followed: A jaw-dropping cover-up more typical of the old Soviet Union than America.

To every man and woman who carries a firearm, the Erik Scott shooting is a chilling reminder that billion-dollar companies, such as Costco, have irrational, secret, anti-gun policies that literally kill their customers.

Erik, a Boston Scientific cardiac pacemaker sales rep, was carrying a legally registered concealed firearm, while he and his girlfriend were shopping at Costco-Summerlin in Las Vegas. He also had a concealed-carry permit in his wallet, issued by the same Metro police force that killed him.

When Erik squatted on the floor to verify that three metal water bottles would fit into a soft-sided, zip-up cooler, a Costco employee spotted Erik’s Kimber Ultra Carry .45-caliber semiautomatic in an inside-the-waistband holster. A civil interchange with a Costco manager ensued, and Erik was told that a Costco policy banned guns inside company stores—although there were no signs to that effect posted outside or inside, and there’s no mention of a gun-ban policy in the membership application. Erik calmly responded that his sidearm was legal and that he had a concealed-carry weapon (CCW) permit on his person. The manager never asked Erik to leave the store, and the two parted on good terms, according to witnesses.

The Costco manager reassured a plainclothes security guard that Erik would be leaving soon. For reasons known only to him, the same young, cocky guard—defying management practices and company policy—placed a 911 call to the local police, falsely claiming Erik “had a gun and was acting erratic.” Thinking an armed madman was barricaded inside, Metro cops descended on the store in overwhelming force—15 police cruisers, a helicopter, an incident-command team and an ambulance.

An inbound Metro lieutenant suggested that Costco managers quietly evacuate the store. Unaware that the evacuation had anything to do with him, Erik and his girlfriend calmly walked out with the crowd, passing three Metro officers waiting at the entrance and exit doors. Costco’s aforementioned security guard identified Erik to an agitated, scared Metro officer, William Mosher, who was clutching a semiautomatic, visibly shaking and sweating profusely. Alarmed, Mosher spun around and immediately yelled something, which even nearby cops failed to comprehend.

Erik turned to find a frightened, supersized cop shouting three conflicting commands. With his left hand, Erik lifted his T-shirt to expose the Kimber, and repeated, “I am armed, I am armed … .” Witnesses said he moved his right elbow enough to expose the Kimber. In his right hand, Erik held a BlackBerry cell phone.

Mosher instantly panicked and fired two shots with a .45-caliber Glock 21. The cop’s first hollow-point slug struck Erik in the heart; the second went through his right thigh, well below his jeans’ front pocket.

Two other officers hesitated not at all, then fired another five rounds, all into Erik’s back. Erik was shot a total of seven times. The five that hit him in the back were fired after he was on the ground, dying.

Based on a recording of the Costco fool’s 911-call, we’ve confirmed that Mosher gave Erik three conflicting commands and fired, all within two seconds. Mosher then knelt on his victim’s back and handcuffed Erik’s hands.

Costco had numerous security cameras inside the store and at least four trained on the entrance, where the lethal shooting took place. Violating department policies, Metro detectives did NOT immediately seize the surveillance system’s two digital video recorders’ hard disks. They left the critical DVR and hard drive in Costco’s control for five days, allowing Costco-Summerlin personnel and the store’s IT contractor to tamper with video data. Five days after the shooting, Metro detectives finally decided to pick up one Costco DVR. After valiant attempts to “recover” critical imagery, the DVR was sent to the U.S. Secret Service’s Los Angeles office, where forensics experts examined it. The experts later testified that 96 percent of the DVR’s data were recovered. The four percent not recoverable just happened to encompass the time Erik was in Costco, as well as the fatal officer-involved shooting. The hard disk’s platter sectors, where that critical four percent of unrecoverable data resided, was physically damaged, as if the disk were running, “then dropped from about chest high,” according to forensic experts’ testimony.

Within hours of the shooting, a Clark County deputy public administrator and a Metro cop illegally entered Erik’s condominium and removed several of his firearms. One pistol, a small Ruger LCP, was later produced as “proof” that Erik was carrying two guns. Why two? Because the AMR ambulance crew had reported finding a gun on Erik’s body. The sole gun Erik really was carrying (the Kimber) had already been removed from his dead body and placed on the ground at Costco, still in the holster, as if Erik had pulled it, thereby “justifying” Erik’s murder. In fact, the only item Erik ever had in-hand was his BlackBerry smartphone. In a state of panic, Mosher couldn’t distinguish a BlackBerry from a semiautomatic pistol. Erik was literally executed.

There is absolutely no doubt that Erik was murdered. However, the integrity-challenged cops of Metro’s “Blue Wall” immediately resorted to post-shooting procedures that are standard practice for hundreds of corrupt Las Vegas police officers: Conceal the facts, destroy and manufacture “evidence,” coerce selected eyewitnesses, and systematically demonize the deceased victim. The cover-up of Erik’s murder-by-cop was aided and abetted by the Clark County district attorney, an unprincipled union—the Las Vegas Police Protective Association—and wealthy power brokers who control The Strip.

My family filed two lawsuits in federal court—one against the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, the three shooters and the sheriff, Douglas Gillespie, and a second against Costco. For reasons unbelievable, both suits went nowhere. After the second was dismissed, our lawyer said, “I don’t think it’s possible to get justice in this town.”

The truth about Erik’s murder and its blatant cover-up is so bizarre that non-Las Vegas citizens would never believe it. Consequently, I resorted to asymmetric warfare. I wrote a novel based on the actual events of my son’s senseless execution. Entitled The Permit, the book is “faction”—truth wrapped in a techno-thriller story. The Permit is a fast-moving, riveting tale of intrigue, corruption and accountability, in which murder-by-cop victim “Erik Steele” was actually a covert assassin for Checkmate, an ultra-secret Department of Homeland Security counterterrorism team. Arrogant, low-intelligence Las Vegas Metro cops had brazenly killed a high-value federal agent. As Metro leaders soon realize, their trigger-happy cretins truly did kill the wrong guy.

Only in fiction was justice finally done.

******

William B. Scott, the late-Erik Scott’s father and author of “The Permit,” is a full-time author and consultant. He retired in 2007 as the Rocky Mountain Bureau Chief for Aviation Week & Space Technology. Over a 22-year career with the international magazine, he wrote more than 2,500 stories, and received 17 editorial awards. He is a coauthor of two other novels, “Space Wars: The First Six Hours of World War III” and “Counterspace: The Next Hours of World War III,” and a nonfiction book, “Inside the Stealth Bomber: The B-2 Story.”

During a nine-year Air Force career, Bill served as aircrew on classified airborne-sampling missions, collecting nuclear debris by flying through radioactive clouds; an electronics engineering officer at the National Security Agency, developing satellite communications security systems; and an instrumentation and flight test engineer on U.S. Air Force fighter and transport aircraft development programs.

Bill is a Flight Test Engineer graduate of the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School and a licensed commercial pilot with instrument and multi-engine ratings. He has logged approximately 2,000 hours on 80 aircraft types, and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from California State University-Sacramento.


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A Bad Business: Avoid ‘Kimberley’s Tailoring & Alterations’ Like The Plague

Asia, Business, Capitalism, Free Markets

The fact that the proprietor of “Kimberley’s Tailoring & Alterations” has received some good reviews suggests that she has a clientele that expects little, is easily intimidated and has no qualms about parting with a LOT of money UPFRONT—yes, you heard me—with no assurances that the job will come up to standards, other than the abrupt, obnoxious manners of the proprietor. “Kimberley,” I presume.

I entered “Kimberley’s Tailoring & Alterations” for the first time ever to have two new skirts shortened. Pinning the skirts for hemming proved a somewhat unpleasant experience. “Kimberley” made no particular attempt to advise on length, or enable me to properly see the length of the hem, vis-à-vis the shoes. She did, however, convey in her gruff, incoherent demeanor what she could NOT do for me, rather than what was achievable. Indeed, “Kimberley” made it crystal clear that her aim was not to please this customer, but to lord it over her. No matter, I thought to myself. We all have our idiosyncrasies. So long as she’s good at what she does, right?

Following the fitting, I headed to the counter. I expected to receive a slip—perhaps pay a deposit—and depart. Whereupon “Kimberley” informed me that I would have to pay her in full and UPFRONT. I said that I seldom pay in advance for a service I have not received, except when the government forces that on me, and I presume she is not working for them (she’d make a great TSA agent). If I pay upfront, I inquired, what recourse will I have should she botch the job? None, “Kimberley” conceded. How much did she want for hemming two skirts, I inquired?

ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTY EIGHT DOLLARS! $138!

The skirts, although stunning and well-made (one even made in Paris), were bought on sale for $29 each (at “Winners,” in Vancouver, B.C.: thanks, Karen, for sending me there). I told “Kimberley” I would not pay $138 for hemming. And I would most certainly not be paying $138 in advance. I’d be prepared to pay a deposit, no more. Besides, with the full amount in her pocket, what incentive would she have to do a good job? I requested that she return the pinned garments, at once. I offered to pay for the time she spent pinning the skirts for hemming. More civilized and reasonable than that one can’t get.

Whereupon “Kimberley” became unhinged, clutched my PROPERTY (the skirts), refused to turn them over, and informed me she’d be removing the pins forthwith. I had stood for 25 minutes in her sweltering shop, being pinned for hemming. I saw no reason for her to be so irrational and undo the work. “I’ll pay you for your time as well as for a box of pins,” I offered. Again, I demanded she return my garments forthwith.

From there on it was downhill. “Kimberley” threatened to call 911 and claim I had assaulted her, because I had reached for my skirts, which she was clutching and refusing to return. I took out $20, put it on the counter, and demanded again that she give me my property, or else she’d hear from my lawyer. I promised that I would be committing the experience at “Kimberley’s Tailoring & Alterations” to pixels.

Finally, “Kimberley” relented. My skirts were returned and she yelled, running after me, “I don’t want your money.” Realizing she was making a scene outside, “Kimberley” retreated into the shop with the cash. Good riddance. I headed to the adjacent “Dirk’s,” where the service is always fantastic and the people genteel and gracious.

Incidentally, I had a similar experience with “Margarita Tailor,” also of Issaquah. I can only imagine that in both instances (“Kimberley” & Margarita), one is dealing with individuals from an authoritarian culture, who do not understand how free-market transactions work.


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Three Almighty Amigos

Business, IMMIGRATION

Apples and oranges. The article “Break the Immigration Impasse,” as Mark Levin pointed out today, has absolutely nothing to do with the deluge of Central-American dependents across the Southern US border. Written by three business men who’re worth many billions—SHELDON G. ADELSON, WARREN E. BUFFETT and BILL GATES—the editorial dwells on skilled immigration. The new arrivals, for whom the welcome-mat is being rolled out, are unskilled. To switch the three amigos’ words around, they’ll “make hefty withdrawals from the economy, not deposits.”

Aside from conflating their wishes with “the nation’s interests,” the three billionaires manage also to cram the short op-ed with misconceptions (or lies).

There is no limit to the number of geniuses American companies can import through the open-ended O-1 visa program, which allows unlimited access to individuals with unique abilities. I imagine that a graduate student with unique abilities can apply for an 0-1 visa.

Levin is absolutely correct. These ponces have written an op-ed in a paper no real American will even read, purporting to know what’s good for the same folks and their families. Does Gates send his kids to the overflowing and backward public schools? Do bully boy Buffett’s grandchildren mix with yours at the local community college? Do ADELSON, BUFFETT and GATES live in third-world east Los Angeles?

What hubris.


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UPDATED: Desperately Seeking Desperadoes in Diapers

Business, Founding Fathers, IMMIGRATION, libertarianism, Nationhood

“Desperadoes in Diapers” is the current column, now on The Quarterly Review. An excerpt:

“First they came: thousands of unaccompanied illegal minors rushing the South-Western border. Then came the theories as to why they came. Determined not to miss a trick, America’s traitor elite—open-border interests and enemies of private-property rights—called the arrivals refugees, victims of nativist Know-Nothings who want invaders turned away. The desperadoes in diapers were also said to have fallen victim to a sudden deterioration in conditions in Central America. No proof has been advanced for the claim that, all of a sudden, things in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador have worsened. Because they reason in circles, no-border advocates deploy no logic to justify their claims. Only this did these Aristotelians say:

That Central American minors are arriving, hat-in-hand, is in itself proof that their homes have become uninhabitable. Quod erat demonstrandum (as Erik Rush likes to say); Q.E.D.; case proven.

Having been given the go-ahead by media mogul Rupert Murdoch—he came out for de facto limitless importation of third-world immigrants—his employees at Fox News cued the violins. Shepherd Smith was weeping and gnashing his teeth: “Not politics, but the disgusting conditions in their countries have sent these kids to our shores,” he asserted. “What is a caring nation to do? Their parents love them so much; they gave them to smugglers for a better life.”

However poor, this here mother would never have handed over her daughter to a smuggler. But what do I know about parental love? No more than the nation’s first president knew about the glue that was meant to keep America together.

In his Farewell Address, George Washington presented what historian Paul Johnson calls “an encapsulation of what [he] thought America was, or ought to be, about.” America, said Washington, “is a country which is united by tradition and nature. ‘With slight shades of difference, you have the same Religion, Manners, Habits and Political Principles.’”

What a dummy!

“The children, the children,” wailed Fox News’ Megyn Kelly. “It’s all about the children. We are the United States, what do we do about the children?” Such showy “humanitarianism” invariably means the following: Working people in the U.S., with children of their own to mind, will be roped into supporting the children of the world. Enslave one set of people to whom American politicians are beholden by law, for the benefit of another.

Where’s the humanity for the non-consenting host population? …

Read the compete column. “Desperadoes in Diapers” is now on The Quarterly Review..

Our German readers can now follow this column and other worthy writers in the JUNGE FREIHEIT, a weekly newspaper of excellence.

Editors wishing to feature the “Return to Reason” column in their publications, pixel or paper, please contact Bookings@ilanamercer.com. Or, ilana@ilanamercer.com

UPDATE (7/3): Myron Robert Pauli: “I liked the quote of John Quincy Adams. Historian David McCullom said he was the most intelligent of our Presidents. His nickname was Old Man Eloquent. When one plots the trajectory from John Quincy (‘America does not go around in search of monsters to destroy …. She might become the dictatress of the world’) Adams to Bush-II and Obama, it makes me want to cry. – - – Arguably, I am a classical liberal but not a libertarian anarchist OR a welfare-socialist. I do not want foreign mobs taking $$ and turning the country even more socialistic nor do I want to have to turn my own home into a personal fortress to keep out the horde. The reality of modern America is that Washington and Adams would essentially be intellectual outcasts in America of 2014.”


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Surface Pro 3: Perfection

Business, Intelligence, Technology

Surface Pro 3: It is perfection. Congratulation to my pepes on the project—they must remain anonymous as only the Big Dogs get the credit. First and foremost is the spouse, Sean. Next is The Other Oracle, sage of the antenna. Especially ingenious is the Surface Pen, which sports a tiny clip into which an even tinier antenna has been fitted. So spectacular is Surface Pro 3, that one can pardon Mr. Panay’s perversion of the English language to describe its ergonomic functionality: “Lapability.” Speaking of biotechnology: Kudos too to “Tigger” on keyboards.


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It’s Official: Obama Care To End Employer-Based Health Care

Business, Healthcare, Labor, Regulation

In “The Glories of Hussein’s Proctology,” I worried that, “Perhaps, like Michelle Malkin, I too will lose my coverage. It is not impossible that even a mammoth like Microsoft, whose chairman trumpets Big Government at every turn, will see the benefits to the bottom line of dropping spouses like myself.”

Our healthcare plan has since altered for the first time ever. The complete coverage we were previously afforded is now a high-deductible, cost-sharing plan with a health-savings account. It had already cost us over 2000 additional dollars in 2013.

A year has gone by, and the New York Times is pleased to bring tidings of these very developments, agreeing for the most with the researchers, S&P Capital IQ, that pushing people like me off coverage we like and want to keep, and onto the Idiot’s exchanges will make us gormless fools “more autonom[y] around [the] management of [our] own health care.”

The NYT is correct in that the third-payer system has turned the employer into “a social service agency.” The answer, however, is not more government, but a free-market in medicine where nothing comes between doctor and patient.


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