Category Archives: Law

Why So Many Cop Killings?

BAB's A List, Criminal Injustice, Fascism, GUNS, Justice, Law

BY WILLIAM B. SCOTT

In the wake of grand jury decisions to not indict two police officers, who killed Michael Brown and Eric Garner, persistent protests erupted across the United States. These led to senseless attacks against police officers, including two New York City cops, killed as they sat in their patrol car. Unfortunately, such reprehensible, inexcusable shootings were predictable—and will continue, unless timely, pragmatic action is taken.

Activists, media analysts and politicians have focused on myriad “causes” for the unrest—race-based unfairness, a perceived pro-police bias within the judiciary, mendacious cops, legal system deficiencies, and other issues—to explain the recent backlash against an epidemic of citizen fatalities at the hands of police officers.

Overshadowed by rightful outrage and angst that followed the insane execution of Officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu in New York is an equally alarming fact: In 2014, police officers killed 1,100 people, an average of three every day of the year. (KilledByPolice.net) That figure contrasts with 126 law enforcement officers killed in 2014, according to an annual report released by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. Fifty officers were killed with guns, and 15 of those were via “ambush assaults,” matching a 2012 total. Attacks on cops have been increasing over the past few years, although police work is much safer today than it was in the 1970s.

These statistics should be a loud-and-clear wakeup call for every American. Unless leaders at the federal, state and local levels openly acknowledge that there’s a dark, disturbing correlation between the deaths of 1,100 citizens and a rash of intentional, random attacks on police officers, this nation will be condemned to thousands more heartbreaking funerals in 2015.

Indignant police union leaders’ demands that Congress label attacks on uniformed officers as “hate crimes” have yielded chilly, skeptical receptions. Equally irate American citizens are demanding practical, substantive changes in police policies, practices and training—realistic solutions that hold quick-to-shoot cops accountable, yet protect good, honorable officers, who daily live their oaths to protect and serve.

Worried public officials from the White House to local mayors’ offices and city councils are scrambling to appease angry, fed up, disaffected citizens and embattled police officers, before outright armed rebellion explodes into nationwide chaos. Most public officials fully understand that citizens are fed up with post-shooting patronization: “We’re conducting a thorough investigation to determine exactly what occurred.” “We’ll change policies, procedures and practices to make sure this never happens again.” And the tired granddaddy of all, “We’ll improve officer training.”

On the other side, upstanding, professional police officers are frustrated by protests and repercussions attributed to the misdeeds, questionable shootings, chokings and general abuse committed by their uniformed compatriots. Consequently, the chasm between disheartened cops and exasperated, infuriated citizens continues to widen.

Police officers and taxpayers of all races and creeds, from Los Angeles to New York, must face several inescapable truths: Unless drastic improvements are made, the only elements guaranteed to change will be cops’ annual body count and the number of attacks on police officers. And race isn’t the primary factor driving either police brutality or ambushes on cops. Despite what we’re told by the media, high-profile activists and police unions, many of today’s sworn officers are equal-opportunity abusers and killers. They shoot to kill, without regard for ethnicity or creed.

Something must be done to drastically curb police brutality and killing, as well as egregious attacks on police officers, then rebuild trust between citizens and the U.S. law enforcement community, before outrage ignites a shooting war.

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William B. Scott is a former bureau chief for Aviation Week & Space Technology magazine, a Flight Test Engineer graduate of the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School and author of The Permit, a thriller based on his eldest son’s death.


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When Arms Of The State Wrestle, Citizens Rest

Crime, Government, Law, Regulation, The State

About the feud between the New York Police force and “Clintonian Mayor De Blasio,” Chris Rossini at Target Liberty has this to say: “[G]overnment vs. government battles should be cheered. The more they fight amongst themselves, the better off the rest of us are.”

The New York Times reports that as a result of the fight, the NYPD has been ignoring “low-level offenses” for the last two weeks: For the seven days ending Sunday, officers made 2,401 arrests citywide, compared with 5,448 in the same week a year ago, a 56 percent decline.

Hold on a second!!

Where’s the chaos?


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Jeremy Bentham: Very Bad For Liberty, Indeed

Individualism Vs. Collectivism, Law, libertarianism, Natural Law, Political Philosophy, The State

The following columns make derisive mention of utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham. The columnist (guilty) assumed (guilty again) that her readers, like many good libertarians (namely, natural-rights libertarians), would identify Bentham’s name as a synonym for statism and collectivism, to distinguish from liberty and individualism.

Libertarian legal scholar Randy Barnett, I recall, particularly enjoyed this from “A Romp Down Memory Lane With Justice Roberts” (7/6/2012):

“Why would George Bush care whether a judicial nominee can tell Blackstone from Bentham, when he can’t?”

“More of a Benthamite bureaucrat than a truth seeker” is from “PATRICIDE AND PROSECUTORIAL MISCONDUCT” (September 11, 2002).

Remember Reno!” (9/8/2006) equated Benthamism with legal excesses, whereby the law, “intended as a bulwark against government abuses,” had become “an implement of government, to be utilized by all-knowing rulers for the ‘greater good’—the founders’ Blackstonian view of the law” having “been supplanted by a Benthamism that encourages ambitious prosecutors to discard a defendant’s rights.”

“‘Mad Dog’ Sneddon Vs. Michael Jackson” (7/5/2005) mentions once again the Benthamite notion of “the law as an implement of government, to be utilized by all-knowing rulers for the ‘greater good.’

The Library of Economics and Liberty expounds a little more about Bentham the utilitarian, whose “publications were few,” and whose foundational belief was “that all social actions should be evaluated by the axiom, ‘It is the greatest happiness of the greatest number that is the measure of right and wrong.’”

In a word, utilitarianism, and by extension, statism and collectivism.

Counter to Adam Smith’s vision of “natural rights,” Bentham believed that there were no natural rights to be interfered with.

Trained in law, Bentham never practiced, choosing instead to focus on judicial and legal reforms. His reform plans went beyond rewriting legislative acts to include detailed administrative plans to implement his proposals. In his plan for prisons, workhouses, and other institutions, Bentham devised compensation schemes, building designs, worker timetables, and even new accounting systems. A guiding principle of Bentham’s schemes was that incentives should be designed “to make it each man’s interest to observe on every occasion that conduct which it is his duty to observe.” Interestingly, Bentham’s thinking led him to the conclusion, which he shared with Smith, that professors should not be salaried.

In his early years Bentham professed a free-market approach. He argued, for example, that interest rates should be free from government control (see Defence of Usury). By the end of his life he had shifted to a more interventionist stance. He predated Keynes in his advocacy of expansionist monetary policies to achieve full employment and advocated a range of interventions, including the minimum wage and guaranteed employment.

Jeremy Bentham was a thoroughbred statist; the quintessential bureaucrat and social engineer, who devised ways to tinker in oder to optimize the individual pawn’s common-good conduct.


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How Long Before The DSM Invents Diagnosis Of … Gun Incompatibility Disorder?

GUNS, Law, Pseudoscience, Psychiatry

Gun-restriction advocates want nothing more than to restrain “predisposed” individuals before they transgress. The central authorities will decide who falls within this extremely plastic category. The same planners will act with the complicit assistance of the pseudo-scientific profession of psychiatry. Seriously: How long before the Psychiatric Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM # infinity) invents a diagnosis of gun incompatibility disorder? Against this kind of prior-restraint argument even Ivy league statists have argued, albeit with respect to limitations on speech only.

We are witnessing today a tremendous and ominous expansion of preventive law in the area of civil liberties. More and more, our controls are being devised not as punishment for actual wrongful conduct, but with a view to preventing future evils by a series of restrictions and qualifications that seriously jeopardize freedom …

In the spirit of prior restraint is the case of a veteran who presented with symptoms of insomnia and had his guns confiscated. (With the active encouragement of the liberty loving police force. It figures. The local police monopoly certainly made snide comments of displeasure on handing me my firearm license.) Via American Thinker:

New York State Police ordered the permanent confiscation of Mr. Montgomery’s registered handguns after he sought treatment for insomnia. The confiscation was ordered under Cuomo’s “SAFE Act” gun-control law.

The allegations in the case are downright scary. The complaint contends that Montgomery, a Navy veteran and retired police officer who rose to the rank of detective sergeant during his 30-year career, voluntarily sought treatment for insomnia at a hospital on Long Island in May of 2014 after relocating to a new home several hundred miles from his previous residence.

According to the suit, the hospital diagnosed the plaintiff as “mildly depressed,” and his clinical evaluation stated, “Patient has no thoughts of hurting himself. Patient has no thoughts of hurting others. Patient is not having suicidal thoughts. Patient is not having homicidal thoughts…” and “there is no evidence of any psychotic processes, mania, or OCD symptoms. Insight, judgment, and impulse control are good.” The suit further alleges that a psychiatrist told the plaintiff, “I don’t know why you were referred here. You don’t belong here.”

Nonetheless, the suit contends that five days after being discharged from the hospital, the local sheriff’s department showed up at Montgomery’s door and seized his four registered handguns, including his former duty sidearm, after the sheriff had been subjected to “repeated pressure” by the New York State Police, who claimed that Montgomery had been declared mentally defective and had been involuntarily committed to a mental institution.

The gun confiscation aforementioned is a logical conclusion to prior restraint legal arguments.

Mentioned above is the Psychiatric Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-IV). The Rosetta Stone of the profession has grown since its inception in the 1950s from 60 categories of abnormal behavior to over 410 diagnostic labels and counting. Many of the disorders described in it are more about trend and niche than science.

In the late 1990s, I told readers of my Calgary Herald column about one Dr. John Ratey, a Harvard associate professor and a well-respected, prominent psychiatrist, who claimed, in his 1997 book Shadow Syndromes, that quirky behaviors were actually mild mental illnesses resulting from brain dysfunction.

The lout who is appropriately obsequious with the boss because he knows where his bread is buttered, but who is less dainty with the wife, even thumping her occasionally, would be a candidate for compassion. He is after all doing battle with what Dr. Ratey terms “Intermittent Rage Disorder”. And the dad who dotes on his children while they are with him, but fails to mail them child support money as soon as they are out of sight, is simply afflicted with “Environmental Dependency Disorder”: He remembers his kids only when they are around. Is there proof for these sub-rosa disease categories? None whatsoever, although this has not prevented Ratey and many like him from coating their pronouncements with a patina of scientific respectability—and then cashing in.

Given the tenuous ties between psychiatry and science, how likely is it that “evidence” for new diagnoses will be marshaled in order to keep more people from being able to defend their lives and loved ones with guns?

Very likely.


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UPDATED: Called On The Carpet By The Cops (Backs To De Blasio)

Government, Law, libertarianism, Multiculturalism, Paleolibertarianism, The State

Once again, members of the grieving New York Police force, who turned out to mourn the two cops murdered, turned their collective backs on New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. (See why.)

Understandable. And commendable. De Blasio is a crappy human being.

Libertarians fall into grave error when they condemn all policemen as an arm of the state. Structurally, this is indeed so. However, on the individual level, there are very many men who love their work, want nothing more than to serve their communities, and know nothing of the libertarian political philosophy. They simply want to fight the bad guys.

In as much as libertarians must be able to apply a cool head to police brutality and denounce it; they have to be able to comprehend the reverse.

Community policing is well-nigh impossible in a multicultural, fragmented, deeply divided empire, where a cop has little affinity with a community that is no longer his community, but an alien hodgepodge of humanity of DC’s design.

UPDATE (12/28): Backs To De Blasio. Awesome. A well-choreographed shaming of a shameful human being, as tens of thousands of “blue-uniformed police officers, state troopers, corrections officers and firefighters from across the country” turn their backs on Mayor Bill de Blasio, in Queens, for maligning them collectively.


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Backfires: Blah, Blah, Blah De Blasio & His Racism Bugaboo

Barack Obama, Crime, Justice, Law, libertarianism, Race, Racism

From the point of view of the state-hating libertarian, it is better than marvelous to see politicians and their hangers-on having a really hard time of it. And Bill de blah, blah, blah de Blasio is squirming.

When they attacked and killed policemen, the “monkey see monkey do” protesters and cop-killers got their cues directly from leaders like de Blasio. For it is one thing to examine police action, case-by-case to determine wrongdoing; quite another to accuse law enforcement of harboring (and acting upon) endemic racism, as De Blasio, Al Sharpton and Barack Obama have been habitually doing.

Police brutality? Yes! Militarization of the police force? You bet! “A Government of Wolves”? Yes again! “The Rise of the Warrior Cop”? No doubt! But racism? Nonsense on stilts!

(From “Rand Paul Opportunistic—And Wrong—On Race.”)

“Among other grievances,” admitted the New York Times, “the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, the city’s largest police union, has in recent weeks criticized the mayor for invoking his biracial son, Dante, after the Garner decision. At the time, the mayor described his experience instructing Dante to ‘take special care’ during any police encounters. Some union leaders suggested that Mr. de Blasio was conveying that police officers were to be feared.”

The sinner and his sin eater, Obama and AG Eric Holder, are as complicit in inciting violence against their own police force, by implicating it, en masse, in the racism bugaboo. Ditto Sharpton, the civil rights industry and the protestor rabble.

Meanwhile, another police officer, Charles Kondek, 45, was shot and killed in Florida. The culprit is suspected to be one Marco Antonio Parilla Jr., 23.

You already know who the accessories to the commission of the crime are.


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