Attorney General William Barr Declares War On The General Public

from the dangerous-man-in-a-dangerous-position dept

President Donald Trump set the tone for his administration as soon as he took office. Less than a week after his inauguration, he issued this statement:

One of the fundamental rights of every American is to live in a safe community. A Trump Administration will empower our law enforcement officers to do their jobs and keep our streets free of crime and violence. The Trump Administration will be a law and order administration. President Trump will honor our men and women in uniform and will support their mission of protecting the public. The dangerous anti-police atmosphere in America is wrong. The Trump Administration will end it.

So far, the administration has failed to end the "dangerous anti-police atmosphere" or turn "living in a safe community" into a fundamental right. Trump may back the blue, but the blue keep making things worse for themselves by refusing to alter their tactics, their "us v. them" attitude, or their routine abuse of the rights of those they're supposed to be serving.

The former Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, wanted to roll back the clock for law enforcement, replacing the minor alterations of years of DOJ/law enforcement agency consent decrees with old school drug warring that shoots first and never asks questions.

Sessions is out and the new boss is in. Attorney General William Barr has already made it clear he believes tech companies should create encryption backdoors for law enforcement. Now, he's declaring war on the general public. His speech to a national police union gathering makes it clear the only people who matter are those wearing badges.

According to Barr, police officers are soldiers in a war zone.

[W]hen police officers leave their precincts every morning, there are no crowds on the highway cheering you. And when you come home at the end of the day after a job well done, there are no ticker tape parades.

One reason for this is that law enforcement is fighting a different type of war. We are fighting an unrelenting, never-ending fight against criminal predators in our society. While there are battles won and lost each day, there is never a final resolution – a final victory is never in sight.

It takes a very special kind of courage to wage this kind of fight – a special kind of commitment; a special kind of self-sacrifice.

This mindset already permeates much of law enforcement. Availing themselves of the military's surplus gear and vehicles, along with repurposed military tech, police officers have treated the neighborhoods they patrol as war zones. Anyone who isn't a cop is an enemy.

These supposed war zones have been getting safer and safer. There are a few outliers, but crime rates have been falling steadily across the nation for nearly 25 years. But you wouldn't know that from talking to cops, especially those that already look like soldiers and treat normal warrant service like a military operation.

William Barr wants a police state. He wants it because he's decided to trust the relentlessly negative propaganda spun by law enforcement, rather than the annual crime reports assembled by his own department. Barr says society is crumbling and it's up to armed men to restore order.

If people lose the values and moral discipline to control themselves, then government would increasingly have to use external force to keep order, and the community would gradually lose its freedom. This is what James Madison was talking about when he said, “We have staked our future on the ability of each of us to govern ourselves.”

We live in an age now when the institutions we have relied on to inculcate values and self-restraint have been under constant assault for over 50 years. As a result, we see about us increased social pathology: boys growing up without fathers; alienated and angry young men; gangs engaged in the most brutal violence; mass shootings; increasing mental illness and suicide among young people; a drug epidemic inflicting casualties beyond what we would sustain in a major war; growing domestic violence; an increase in sexual assaults and child exploitation.

Gang violence is down because crime rates as a whole have declined for two decades straight. Mass shootings are still a relative anomaly. If there is actually a drug epidemic, it seems ridiculous to assume doubling down on things that haven't worked for four straight decades will fix it. The police are ill-equipped -- perhaps deliberately -- to handle interactions with the mentally ill and suicidal. If domestic violence is growing, certainly law enforcement's participation in the problem isn't helping. Law enforcement agencies' inability/unwillingness to take sexual assault cases seriously has certainly contributed to this problem, but even these numbers have fallen, rather than increased.

Everything said here is either a lie or intellectually dishonest. And all of it is being used by Barr to push a narrative where cops are facing overwhelming odds with almost zero support.

Part of the problem is the mouthy citizens who demand officers be held to a higher standard.

Despite the fact that the majority of the American people do support the police, unfortunately, over the past few years, there has been an increasingly vocal minority that regularly attacks the police and advances a narrative that it is the police that are the bad guys rather than the criminals. Whenever there is a confrontation involving the use of force by police, they automatically start screaming for the officers’ scalps, regardless of the facts.

Barr says there's no problem here, other than the increase in police criticism. He even uses a popular idiom to describe what he views as a minimal issue, truncating it the way cops and their supporters always do to make it self-serving, rather than cautionary.

I am not suggesting there are never abuses. As with all human institutions there are sometimes bad apples; and we will deal with that. But these are very much the exceptions, not the rule. If anything, I continue to be amazed at the professionalism of our police officers in the most extreme circumstances.

Bad apples spoil everything in the barrel. They convert exceptions into rules. And, no, the DOJ will not "deal with that." Neither will most law enforcement agencies. Under Sessions, the DOJ stopped investigating civil rights abuses by police departments. With the feds out of the picture, local agencies are even less inclined to police their own.

There will be nothing but compliance, if Bill Barr gets his way. There will be no concerns for long-existing rights or the well-being of anyone police interact with. Why? Because cops are apparently owed respect under this DOJ. They no longer need to earn it.

The anti-police narrative is fanning disrespect for the law. In recent years, we have witnessed increasing toleration of the notion that it is somehow okay to resist the police.  

[...]

We need to get back to basics. We need public voices, in the media and elsewhere, to underscore the need to “Comply first, and, if warranted, complain later.” This will make everyone safe – the police, suspects, and the community at large. And those who resist must be prosecuted for that crime. We must have zero tolerance for resisting police. This will save lives.

This is nauseating. This is bootlicker telling a nation it needs to get busy licking boots. This is Barr telling people their rights are a distant second to efficient policing and speedy arrests.

As for your rights, only one of them may improve. According to Barr, your right to a speedy trial will attach immediately if you kill a cop.

We will be proposing legislation providing that in cases of mass murder, or in cases of murder of a law enforcement officer, there will be a timetable for judicial proceedings that will allow imposition of any death sentence without undue delay. Punishment must be swift and certain.

You get one right and you're presumed guilty until proven innocent.

Finally, Barr wants the American public to view law enforcement officers as gods among men.

One of my messages today is that the American people need to pay close attention to issues of public safety in their communities. As a society we should not take our police officers for granted.

I would like to see the American people gain a renewed appreciation of the noble work done by our police officers in protecting our communities. I would like to see increased recognition that being a police officer is the toughest job in the country, and it is getting tougher. I would like to see a greater commitment to supporting the police.

Barr can't make this happen. But if he can budge the needle a bit, more Americans will view cops as cops view themselves: powerful arbiters of justice that should never be questioned by those who pay their salaries.

This should not be taken lightly. These remarks to members of a powerful police union may seem a bit like playing it up for the home crowd, but Barr's record since he took office shows he has little interest in ensuring the Department of Justice actually lives up to its name. He taking an already-skewed perspective held by many in law enforcement and making it worse. And by his very presence, he's announcing to the nation the DOJ will side with cops in almost every situation, no matter how much abuse they engage in. He has elevated them above the people they serve and that is going to continue to harm the relationship they have with their communities, exacerbating the problems he claims he's going to eliminate.

Filed Under: civil liberties, doj, police, rule of law, william barr


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  • identicon
    pixelation, 15 Aug 2019 @ 12:06pm

    "The dangerous anti-police atmosphere in America is wrong. The Trump Administration will end it."
    AND...
    "No knock warrants will increase until morale improves!"

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    OA (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 12:20pm

    Dystopia

    Ahhh, yes. Dystopic scenario #8610027. Sometimes known as a 'Judge Dredd' scenario. So many possible dystopias, so difficult to choose!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 16 Aug 2019 @ 5:48am

      Re: Dystopia

      "Ahhh, yes. Dystopic scenario #8610027. Sometimes known as a 'Judge Dredd' scenario."

      Not far enough down that particular rabbit hole, I'm afraid. Barr's rhetoric is actually point for point very reminiscent of the justifications proposed by Erich Honecker of the old DDR when the west challenged him on the Stasi.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Talmyr, 16 Aug 2019 @ 6:22am

      Re: Dystopia

      At least the Judges in Megacity 1 were vaguely fair, and being written by Brits, less likely to gun you down for the lulz.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Aug 2019 @ 5:30am

        Re: Re: Dystopia

        "At least the Judges in Megacity 1 were vaguely fair, and being written by Brits, less likely to gun you down for the lulz."

        More like "draconian but nigh-incorruptible". Having orphaned children brainwashed through sleep learning and indoctrination for twenty years to become fighting machines unable to even conceive of corruption isn't really what I'd call "desirable"...

        ...but I'd still draw the analogy to the far more malign and accurate parallel of the Stasi.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 12:25pm

    Sounds like an except from this book:

    Qualified Immunity and You (or: Fuck Regular People, You’re More Important) by William Barr; published as part of the Police Officers’ Readiness Kit

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 5:31pm

      Re: Sounds like an except from this book:

      Coos really aren't the problem. Its these policy makers who are guiding the tactics and fulfilling their mission and its full of creeps stealing America's freedom, replacing liberty with tyranny.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Baron von Robber, 15 Aug 2019 @ 12:28pm

    Ah #12 of the 14 characteristics of fascism.
    "12.Obsession with Crime and Punishment
    Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations."

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Matthew Cline (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 12:29pm

    “Comply first, and, if warranted, complain later.”

    This only applies if you comply with an order. If you comply with a request, then by complying you've waived any right to complain about it later.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Gary (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 12:34pm

    Safer than Logging

    Being a a LEO is far safer than being a roofer or a logger. Those are the people that deserve more respect!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 12:52pm

    Bring back civil rights investigations

    "Whenever there is a confrontation involving the use of force by police, they automatically start screaming for the officers’ scalps, regardless of the facts."

    Including, or maybe even especially when the cops are in the wrong, see qualified immunity and good faith exceptions, two examples of court made up pro police rules. (They aren't actually law as Congress hasn't acted on them, to their eternal shame).

    "We need to get back to basics. We need public voices, in the media and elsewhere, to underscore the need to “Comply first, and, if warranted, complain later.” This will make everyone safe – the police, suspects, and the community at large."

    The military knows that one shouldn't follow illegal orders, cops (and apparently Barr) just don't care.

    When the governments (the various federal, state, municipal) start to take their responsibilities seriously, I think they might find the populace going along with them, after sufficient action by them to control their watch dogs, and some time for that to sink in (that is if they are actually serious about it).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 1:17pm

      Re: Bring back civil rights investigations

      “Comply first, and, if warranted, complain later.”

      Does that include unlocking devices and social media accounts on demand, and allowing any and all search requests?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 5:46pm

      Re: Bring back civil rights investigations

      What law enforcement needs to do is turn around and point their weapons to the people who are destroying America and who have trashed our great country in the eyes of the world and who have called upon war and conflict around the world and sent our sons and daughters and moms and dads off to foreign countries to force dictating policies upon the world and who never act in good faith and who have used law enforcement to steal Liberty from our very minds and oppressed us and fed us bullshit and bad laws and have killed our own leaders and continue to stop at nothing to destroy America and enslave our youth and pollute the skies and pollute our waters and poison our children and dash hope for a future free from tyranny and corrupt officials giving in to all corporate demands and greed and more taxes and God will some day strike them down who put such burdons on the people and don't lift a finger to help just hurt us every day day in and day out. A swift turnabout is what is really needed from law enforcement. Make America Great again. Get rid of those infiltrating our government for their disloyal agendas.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 6:01pm

        Re: Re: Bring back civil rights investigations

        Do you understand the uses of punctuation? Paragraphs? Sentences? How about logic? Coherent thought? Principles of expressing yourself?

        Now, it is difficult to ken what you are saying, but if I do, then what you are suggesting would be a violation of the law. Holding those in charge accountable isn't necessarily a bad thing, but shooting them isn't gonna get the rule of law back on track.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 6:15pm

          Re: Re: Re: Bring back civil rights investigations

          Fire a shot? Where is that? I didn't want to use punctuation. Go get a life if you are that critical of me and let those people off who are in a position of authority in this country and use it not for us but for them. They who continue to lie through their smiling teeth and steal America's wealth out from underneath our country. Anon anon

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            nasch (profile), 17 Aug 2019 @ 1:56pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Bring back civil rights investigations

            Fire a shot? Where is that?

            What is the point of "pointing their weapons to the people who are destroying America" if they're not going to shoot them? What were you trying to say there - just threaten them with violence and hope they change their tune and turn everything around?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 9:46am

          Re: Re: Re: Bring back civil rights investigations

          Run on sentences are the cat's meow.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 7:36pm

        Re: Re: Bring back civil rights investigations

        But enough about the GOP.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Baron von Robber, 16 Aug 2019 @ 6:26am

        Re: Re: Bring back civil rights investigations

        This is a comma: ,

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Toom1275 (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 1:11pm

    I think we've found bootlicker1701's secret identity here.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 1:43pm

    If people lose the values and moral discipline to control themselves, then government would increasingly have to use external force to keep order, and the community would gradually lose its freedom.

    "We are therefore going to pour money into education and social programs, in order to make sure that people learn the values and moral discipline to control themselves."

    [Beat]

    "Nah, just kidding, we're using this as an excuse to accelerate the 'community losing its freedom' bit for our own purposes."

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 6:36am

      Re:

      Since many politicians have lost the values and moral discipline to control themselves, then the people increasingly have to use their values and morals to keep order, and the community will gradually regain its freedom.

      Theoretically

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    R.H. (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 1:49pm

    The Sentiment Rightly Offered to Police in the United States

    "Nobody ever made a song called 'Fuck the Firefighters.'" I heard that line from my brother yesterday. It's pretty on the nose for this article.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 6:22pm

      Re: The Sentiment Rightly Offered to Police in the United States

      Most of those fires are started by morons and negligence. Every night that siren goes off five times waking the whole town up. I think to myself 'let it burn' what are we the bucket bragade? Why risk your lives for some idiot who smokes in bed half drunk out of his mind, who will probably cuss you out for flooding his house and saving his kids? But I would never think or say, "fuck the Firefighters."

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 6:37am

        Re: Re: The Sentiment Rightly Offered to Police in the United St

        "Why risk your lives for some idiot who smokes in bed"

        Oh, idk - to save others in the same apartment building?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:01am

          Re: Re: Re: The Sentiment Rightly Offered to Police in the Unite

          That is what is so scary about living in an apt building. Who is passed out with a cigarette smoldering in the carpet just beneath you one floor down?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:26am

        Re: Re: The Sentiment Rightly Offered to Police in the United St

        Would you prefer the firefighters don't bother to show up and prevent your house or apartment from catching fire while your neighbor's burns down? That's often what they do: Prevent neighbors from also burning as a top priority, put out the ongoing fire as a second priority.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      TwiztidJuggla420 (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 11:00pm

      Re: The Sentiment Rightly Offered to Police in the United States

      Have you heard that new track "Fuck The Paramedics" yet? It's dope as fuck!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      nasch (profile), 17 Aug 2019 @ 2:00pm

      Re: The Sentiment Rightly Offered to Police in the United States

      "Nobody ever made a song called '**** the Firefighters.'"

      Hm. So... police should carry axes instead of guns?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    David, 15 Aug 2019 @ 1:55pm

    Here is a scary thought

    Gang violence is down because crime rates as a whole have declined for two decades straight. Mass shootings are still a relative anomaly.

    There is rather little overlap between those engaged in mass shootings and gang violence. The people engaging in gang violence have a purported enemy other than "society" in general or a particular race or creed.

    So we need more gang violence as a safety valve. Fortunately there is the substitute drug of sport team fanship which is slightly less violent.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      AricTheRed, 15 Aug 2019 @ 3:20pm

      Re: Here is a scary thought

      David,

      It depends on ones definition of "Mass Shooting"

      That most often cited in national news appears to recently be "A shooting with four or victims other than the perpetrator(s)." Unfortunately that would indicate that many of these "Mass Shootings" are Domestic violence, like family assassination/suicide, plus "gang violence", & victims of gunfire while the perpetrator(s) are engaged in the pursuit of a different criminal act.

      It appears you are thinking of the Mass Shooting where the attacks are the ones that generally get covered in detail in the media, where in general the Perp has little to no intimate connection to the victims, or school & workplace shootings which are still rather rare.

      here is an example of a source document with analysis.

      https://www.rand.org/research/gun-policy/analysis/essays/mass-shootings.html

      from www.rand.org
      "Summary: There is no standard definition of what constitutes a mass shooting. Media outlets, academic researchers, and law enforcement agencies frequently use different definitions when discussing mass shootings, leading to different assessments of how frequently mass shootings occur and whether they are more common now than they were a decade or two ago."

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    tom (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 2:12pm

    Its all about the budget. You don't get law enforcement increases if you say overall crime is going down, violent crime is going down, shooting crime is going down, etc. The moment a govt agency says 'Mission Accomplished', their budget gets cut. The moment Neil Armstrong stepped on the moon, NASA's budget got slashed. When the Cold War was declared won, the defense budget was slashed. Other agencies noticed and learned. Now a mission is never accomplished. The moment the old goals are being achieved, new more expensive goals are set, requiring more money and more people.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 3:04pm

    This administration surely runs on pure irony. Barr and Trump have run roughshod all over the law and yet they claim they back the police? They are the first that need to be picked up by the police, man it must feel nice to be above the law like that!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    bobob, 15 Aug 2019 @ 3:09pm

    The US is simply copying the successful strategy used by Putin: wear them down until everyone will surrender some rights to get some stability.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    bhull242 (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 4:08pm

    “Bad apples”?

    I’ve never understood why people defending police say that the bad actors are “a few bad apples.” They seem to be trying to say that the number of bad cops pales in comparison to the number of good cops and is inconsequential, and that having bad actors is inevitable. However, the saying is that “one bad apple spoils the bunch/barrel,” which says nothing about inevitability and implies that any number of bad actors is unacceptable, reflects poorly on the entire organization, and needs to be dealt with swiftly and harshly. I’ve heard it used to justify punishing an entire classroom of children due to the actions of just one or two of them. It makes no sense to reference the saying in this context.

    At any rate, many people who protest police aren’t doing so to prevent future wrongdoing, at least not directly, nor are because they necessarily feel that police misconduct is common, but because there appears to be little to no consequences to what “bad apples” exist. In other words, the problem isn’t necessarily that the bad apples are poisoning the institution in and of themselves, or that there are a lot of them, but that they seem to get away with it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 4:27pm

      Re: “Bad apples”?

      The problem is that the 'good' apples don't rat out the 'bad' apples.

      If we were really talking about apples, then it wouldn't be realistic. But we are talking about people. People with a certain job. The 'bad' apples probably stand out as being bad apples. The question remains, why don't the 'good' apples let significant authorities know about the 'bad' apples? The answer likely, but not conclusively, lies in the probable retribution, either from those in authority (who may or may not be 'bad' apples themselves but are just trying to protect those that serve under them, so long as they don't make waves, so to speak) or from the 'bad' apples themselves.

      Getting home for dinner has more connotations than when the shoot first, ask questions later crowd approach an unarmed, unresistant 'suspect' whom has not been convicted of anything but doesn't comply with an illegal order from those in authority, or who think they are 'the authoritay'.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 16 Aug 2019 @ 5:58am

        Re: Re: “Bad apples”?

        "The question remains, why don't the 'good' apples let significant authorities know about the 'bad' apples?"

        Because even if a police officer has committed murder, sexually abused children, spends his off hours working over random non-white people with truncheon and taser the greatest sin of all is still the one perpetrated by his new partner when that partner reports his ass for all of the above.

        The bad apples don't get caught because the "good" apples will cover the bad ones asses at any cost.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:30am

          Re: Re: Re: “Bad apples”?

          ...which makes even the "good" apples bad. The only logical conclusion is that they're all bad.

          Nuke 'em all and start over, all the way to the top. Abolish police unions while you're at it.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Aug 2019 @ 5:44am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: “Bad apples”?

            To some extent, true.

            In sweden there was a chief of police not too long ago who was, on the surface, well-known for being a rabid feminist, to the point that his subordinates commonly referred to him as "Captain Dress".

            Turned out to be that he'd made good use of having all those levers of access to surveillance results and personal files to run an on-the-side trafficking ring for twelve years.

            He was the only one who got caught and for some reason no one else in the police force was ever even suspected, despite it being obvious he would have had to have a lot of help.

            There's a critical problem when the people who have all the real power over investigations and evidence also happen to have a culture of going all out to defend their own, no matter what.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:09am

        Re: Re: “Bad apples”?

        Good apples are ratting out plenty of people. You go into a park now adays and even in a small park there are about forty-two signs posted for people to report suspicious activity!

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 9:51am

          Re: Re: Re: “Bad apples”?

          "You go into a park now adays and even in a small park there are about forty-two signs posted for people to report suspicious activity!"

          Good thing we have people like BBQ Becky there to enforce the rules .. and more!

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 6:32pm

      Re: “Bad apples”?

      Look at the rights America have given up because a few bad criminals AND FALSE FLAG OPERATIONS and your comment makes more sense in terms of what those policy makers are doing, who are making laws to punish the whole barrel of American citizens because one in a couple hundred million goes postal.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 6:44pm

    Every time these questionable speaches goes off, I easily imagine them all heiling themselves and talking in foreign languages as if they want to rule the world while they are taking away the freedom that makes living life on planet Earth worth it. Is that political science, what they're doing?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Popeye2 (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 8:01pm

    I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing me to pay.

    They are underworked, overpaid, and trigger happy. More trouble than they are worth. And our failure to dissolve most of these dysfunctional police institutions puts all our liberties at risk.

    Shrink the government NOW!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 8:26pm

      Re: I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing me to p

      I have a solution for you. Get the fuck out of America.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 10:28pm

        Re: Re: I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing me

        Naw, I think we'll stay and talk about how the real Indian got scalped by the fake Indian. Nice going, genius!

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:12am

        Re: Re: I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing me

        Tsk tsk..

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:17am

        Re: Re: I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing me

        People are so afraid to be real anymore. They are like monsanto corn fed cattle driving around in their suvs and it is sad this crop of humans today. You get more real people commenting here at Techdirt than you will meet any day of the week, pretty sure.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:31am

        Re: Re: I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing me

        Get the fuck out of America.

        You first. Please.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 6:51am

      Re: I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing me to p

      "All I want for Christmas is a police force that's worth the hard-earned tax dollars that I'm spending on it..."

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:20am

        Re: Re: I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing me

        that you are spending.. how much is that? About two dollars? No wonder the cops are searching for cash and forfeiting our money!

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 9:52am

          Re: Re: Re: I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing

          Ridiculous claims require more than extraordinary evidence.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Aug 2019 @ 5:47am

          Re: Re: Re: I would never purchase police services. Stop forcing

          "that you are spending.. how much is that? About two dollars?"

          With military weaponry and vehicles at their disposal? That probably cost quite a pretty penny.

          "No wonder the cops are searching for cash and forfeiting our money!"

          No, the low wages and occasional petty bribery does give the average officer enough to live on. The fringes from civil forfeiture is the real icing on the cake though.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    NoLongerBreathedIn, 15 Aug 2019 @ 8:22pm

    Gods among men? I agree. Gods in the Greco-Roman mold. Morally no better, in fact maybe a bit worse, but much more powerful.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 8:23pm

    Attorney General William Barr Declares War On The General Public

    This should read:

    Attorney General William Barr Declares was ON CRIMINALS on Behalf of the American Public

    You fucking idiots. Criminals. War on Criminals. He's declaring war on criminals on behalf of honest, hard working, tax paying American Patriots, like me.

    How publicly stupid can you be?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 8:45pm

      Re: Attorney General William Barr Declares War On The General Pu

      Criminals have already had war declared on them. He's accusing Americans as if they are rats that have to be weeded out.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 9:40pm

      Re: I have a solution for you. Get the fuck off of Techdirt

      “How publicly stupid can you be?”

      We can’t hold a candle to you bro.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Toom1275 (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 10:20pm

      Re: Attorney General William Barr Declares War On The General Pu

      That rant would be more believable if Barr wasn't squarely on the criminal side.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 8:46pm

    All hail the conquering army!

    [W]hen police officers leave their precincts every morning, there are no crowds on the highway cheering you. And when you come home at the end of the day after a job well done, there are no ticker tape parades.

    There's nothing impressive about doing your gorram job, and if people aren't happy to see you maybe it has something to do with how utterly infested with rot and corruption the police have become.

    Might as well act surprised that members of the mafia(which differ from the police in that they don't have badges and basically no other way) don't travel to the accompanyment of cheering and parades.

    If people lose the values and moral discipline to control themselves, then government would increasingly have to use external force to keep order, and the community would gradually lose its freedom.

    Swap a few words and that statement becomes much more accurate.

    If police lose the values and moral discipline to control themselves, then the public would increasingly have to use external pressure on the government and society to keep order, and the police would gradually lose its special priviledges that they cannot use responsibly.

    Despite the fact that the majority of the American people do support the police, unfortunately, over the past few years, there has been an increasingly vocal minority that regularly attacks the police and advances a narrative that it is the police that are the bad guys rather than the criminals.

    Probably because in far too many cases the only difference between the groups is who has a badge and who doesn't, and the police are the bad guys.

    Whenever there is a confrontation involving the use of force by police, they automatically start screaming for the officers’ scalps, regardless of the facts.

    Likely due to extensive experience showing that if they don't demand accountability then absolutely none will be applied. That left to their own devices police will almost always protect their own first, no matter what was done.

    I am not suggesting there are never abuses. As with all human institutions there are sometimes bad apples; and we will deal with that.

    No, no you have not, and no they have not. That's the problem. The 'few bad apples' excuse only works if you remove those apples, but that is very much not happening such that by this point the minority is not the 'bad apples' but the small percentage that haven't been corrupted yet.

    But these are very much the exceptions, not the rule.

    That might have been true a good many years back, but these days 'corrupt cop' is the rule rather than exception.

    If anything, I continue to be amazed at the professionalism of our police officers in the most extreme circumstances.

    Then you're either not looking or have abysmally low standards for 'professionalism*.

    The anti-police narrative is fanning disrespect for the law. In recent years, we have witnessed increasing toleration of the notion that it is somehow okay to resist the police.

    That 'anti-police narrative is caused by the police and people like you who give people very good reasons to be 'anti-police'. However it's important to make a distinction for clarity and honesty, in that most people in that group aren't in fact 'anti-police', rather they are 'anti-police corruption', or 'anti-corrupt police', something you'd think that someone who claims to be concerned about rooting out those 'few bad apples' would be all for if they were actually being honest on that point.

    As for the idea that people don't respect the law as much as they used to that can likely also be tied to the police as people see them flaunting if not flat out ignoring it with no penalties. If those tasked with upholding the law can't be bothered with respecting it why should anyone else?

    We need to get back to basics. We need public voices, in the media and elsewhere, to underscore the need to “Comply first, and, if warranted, complain later.” This will make everyone safe – the police, suspects, and the community at large. And those who resist must be prosecuted for that crime.

    'Look, if your rights are being violated just accept it and don't fight back. After they've been violated you can file a complaint with the very people who violated them or a court system that bends over backwards for them, where they will certainly take it very seriously.'

    We must have zero tolerance for resisting police. This will save lives.

    Tell ya what, the public will consider that as soon as you apply and enforce a 'zero tolerance' policy for police abusing their authority, such that a member of the public can justifiably believe that an order from a cop is both legal and reasonable.

    Gotta love that 'it will save lives' bit on the end though, because you know he's not talking about police lives there, he just doesn't have the guts or honesty to admit it.

    We will be proposing legislation providing that in cases of mass murder, or in cases of murder of a law enforcement officer, there will be a timetable for judicial proceedings that will allow imposition of any death sentence without undue delay. Punishment must be swift and certain.

    Murder by cops on the other hand will be treated the same as always however, which is to say brushed under the rug until the heat dies down, or resulting in a wrist slap if the public is audacious enough to demand that some sort of punishment be handed out.

    I would like to see the American people gain a renewed appreciation of the noble work done by our police officers in protecting our communities

    Then get to work ensuring that that's what they're doing by removing those 'few bad apples' you claim to be so very concerned about.

    I would like to see increased recognition that being a police officer is the toughest job in the country, and it is getting tougher.

    Ah yes, the poor put-upon police, given massive leeway by the courts and people like you, held to basically zero standards, and able to get away with acts(robbery/assault/murder) that would see anyone else thrown in a cell. Truly they face such hardships...

    I would like to see a greater commitment to supporting the police.

    Then you'd best get started on making it so that people have a reason to support, rather than fear and distrust, police. Respect and support is earned not owed, and right now police in the US have made very clear that they deserve neither.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 8:52pm

      Re: All hail the conquering army!

      Respect and support is earned not owed, and right now police in the US have made very clear that they deserve neither.

      Got your knickers in a knot today, snowflake?

      Just because no one respects you does not mean that no one respects the police. An overwhelming majority of Americans respect the police.

      Yes, I understand that the criminals and deviants on Techdirt do not support the police. That's why it's fun to come hang out here, watching you simultaneously exercising your rights as Americans and bashing the same country that uniquely gives you those rights.

      Love it or leave it, that would be my advice. The overwhelming majority of God Fearing Gun Owning Patriotic Law Abiding Americans don't give half a shit what you think.

      Go take your Squad to Get The Fuck Out of America! MAGA. Don't plan on going to Israel, though - they don't want you either. I'd recommend Kenya.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 9:01pm

        Re: Re: All hail the conquering army!

        Overwhelming number of Americans who were raised to respect the law don't neccessarily respect police who break laws to enforce laws and are given immunity or good faith exceptions by a justice system that doesn't respect the US Constitution or the American public.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 9:05pm

        Re: Re: All hail the conquering army!

        Hi Hamilton.

        How's your boy Epstein doing?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 9:15pm

        Re: Re: All hail the conquering army!

        Love it or leave it, that would be my advice.

        So... Barr should leave the country since he's so annoyed that people are against police violence and abuse? Sounds like a plan!

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 5:46am

        Re: Re: All hail the conquering army!

        Love it or leave it, that would be my advice.

        Why don't you take your own advice and stop coming here, dumbass?

        Or is your advice so useless that you wouldn't use it yourself?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:34am

        Re: Re: All hail the conquering army!

        That's why it's fun to come hang out here, watching you simultaneously exercising your rights as Americans and bashing the same country that uniquely gives you those rights.

        Nobody here is bashing America. We're bashing the idiots currently in control who are trying their damnedest to tear down what makes this country America. Most of us love this country and we're tired of watching the idiot "MAGA" crowd wreck it further.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 8:54pm

      Re: All hail the conquering army!

      The Mafia don't show up at a junior high school pep rally looking for a fight and most of the time I believe they act polite.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 9:12pm

        Re: Re: All hail the conquering army!

        Techdirt could learn a lot from the mafia, just as you point out. The mafia is polite, but persuasive, in their own quiet way.

        Techdirt, on the other hand, flails hinder and yon, about this crazy idea and that crazy idea, the above article just one example among many. Not polite at all, bat shit crazy articles that don't pass the smell test for any moderate voter.

        When will you understand that Trump WON the last election, and will WIN the next election, if you continue on your same path?

        Manners go a long way, in mafia, in life, and with the American public.

        Mafia. Manners. Persuasion. Elections. Trump 2020. Think about it.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Toom1275 (profile), 15 Aug 2019 @ 10:19pm

          Re: Re: Re: All hail the conquering army!

          [Asserts facts not in evidence]

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 15 Aug 2019 @ 10:24pm

          Re: Re: Re: All hail the conquering army!

          If you're that confident that Trump is going to win in 2020, then what are you so worried about that you need to defecate on insignificant websites?

          Shiva Ayyadurai didn't invent email. You asked for a lawsuit about it, and the judge awarded you with an official decree that he can't prove he did. That ship has sailed and no amount of praying to Colorado Mountain Tiger Fairies is going to change that.

          Get over yourself.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    icon
    Zof (profile), 16 Aug 2019 @ 12:42am

    As long as he deals with Google

    Then I don't care. The threat from Google is greater than the threat from cops doing what cops always do. Defend cops.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Talmyr, 16 Aug 2019 @ 6:30am

      Re: As long as he deals with Google

      Hello Zach Vorhies.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:36am

      Re: As long as he deals with Google

      Just when I think you couldn't up the bar on your own stupidity you prove me wrong. Well done.

      If Google is a threat then so is Free Speech. Given that Free Speech is a major tenet of life in America you must then hate America. Perhaps you should leave and find somewhere else to spew your idiocy.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 10:30am

        Re: Re: As long as he deals with Google

        google is absolutely a threat to all mankind.. they are giving the tools for everyone to spy on neighboring countries and adversaries.. and driving around the autonomous vehicles that will clean up the mess when the scorched earth will no longer be habitable for humans..

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 2:17am

    This strikes me as completely false interpretation of Maddison:

    If people lose the values and moral discipline to control themselves, then government would increasingly have to use external force to keep order, and the community would gradually lose its freedom. This is what James Madison was talking about when he said, “We have staked our future on the ability of each of us to govern ourselves.”

    Would some scholar like to show us why?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Brainiac3397, 16 Aug 2019 @ 5:29am

    Hypocrisy

    "Comply first" says the man held in contempt of Congress...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    lucidrenegade (profile), 16 Aug 2019 @ 5:56am

    Not much we can do to get get rid of Trump unit the 2020 election, but I love this idea. There a petition for NYC to rename the portion of 5th Ave in front of Trump Tower to "President Barack H. Obama Avenue". If it happened, the new address for Trump Tower would be 725 President Barack H. Obama Avenue, New York, NY 10022. I know it's silly or even petty, but what better way to hit back at a narcissist like Trump?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:23am

      Re:

      I'm kinda split on that one. On the one hand that would be freakin' hilarious watching him utterly lose his mind(again) over naming a street after a former president because that street is next to one of his properties.

      On the other hand I've no doubt he and his cheerleaders would jump all over that to distract from whatever his latest fuck-up was.

      Now, if they did it after he was out of office then that second one would go away, at which point I would be all for it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        TFG, 16 Aug 2019 @ 7:36am

        Re: Re:

        Eh, Obama's actions in office were problematic enough (drone strikes, whisteblower crackdowns, etc.) that I'd prefer not to name a street after him.

        Name the street something like "PayYourTaxes" or "National Healthcare" or a policy that he fucking hates. I can get behind that.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Thad (profile), 16 Aug 2019 @ 8:31am

        Re: Re:

        On the other hand I've no doubt he and his cheerleaders would jump all over that to distract from whatever his latest fuck-up was.

        And if it weren't this, it would be something else.

        For Christ's sake, he's in the news this morning for asking if he could buy Greenland.

        Trump and Fox News are never going to be at a loss for things to use as distractions.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jeremy Lyman (profile), 16 Aug 2019 @ 6:24am

    Did anyone catch the self-sacrifices that police are supposedly making while they wage unending war on the citizenry? All I caught were sacrifices everyone else is expected to make in order to make the police's job easier.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Terra, 16 Aug 2019 @ 8:02am

    I would like to see increased recognition that being a police officer is the toughest job in the country, and it is getting tougher.

    I think the soldiers would like a word. As would the firefighters, emergency medical personnel, loggers, miners, teachers in poor school districts...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 8:33am

    Chilling at best...

    If I had to point to one line which really makes my skin crawl, it would be...

    "...We must have zero tolerance for resisting police. This will save lives."

    I doubt this. If it gets to a point where police think even a dirty look constitutes "resisting," what's to stop them from putting one or more bullets through their target on the spot? Perhaps because they "feared for their safety?"

    As it turns out, I've spent the last 15+ years working for my state's highway patrol in a civil service capacity (the nearest equivalent in military terms is NCO).

    In that entire time, I can count the number of times our officers have had to use deadly force on the fingers of one hand (twice, exactly). In both cases, the officers involved were indeed under imminent threat of taking a bullet themselves.

    Nothing made me more proud of the department than when our chief issued a 'General Order' memo last year, explaining in no uncertain terms that our department was not the 'Immigration Patrol,' and that there were to be NO attempts to determine the immigration status of any suspect detained for any infraction. Further, we were not to allow anyone from ICE to 'deputize' us for any reason.

    The way Barr is carrying on, it sounds like he might actually look down his nose at our department for not living up to his Gestapo-like standards.

    Perhaps he's the one who needs an extended stay behind 'barrs.'

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 10:45am

      Re: Chilling at best...

      He's not talking about our lives being saved, he's talking about law enforcement's lives. Boy if I ever saw someone trying to buddy up before, this guy takes first place. Maybe he's got a lead foot and is just buttering them up for lieniancy.. but I doubt it. He is sending them out to scour America now. Last step before the door to door no knock search and destroy orders go out.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ed (profile), 16 Aug 2019 @ 8:54am

    Again...

    Never, ever trust a LEO. They have proven over and over they cannot be trusted. Ever.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Dave P., 16 Aug 2019 @ 9:35am

    Anything you say

    Looks to me as if ol' Trumpy baby is gradually appointing and surrounding himself with "yes" men of like mind. Hmm.....isn't that what Hitler did?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Aug 2019 @ 5:53am

      Re: Anything you say

      "Looks to me as if ol' Trumpy baby is gradually appointing and surrounding himself with "yes" men of like mind. Hmm.....isn't that what Hitler did?"

      Not really. Hitler surrounded himself with a cadre of dysfunctional sociopaths who had exactly one useful talent each and were constitutionally incapable of tying their own shoelaces, let alone navigate a chain of command on their own without screwing up.

      ...uh, Ok...so it DOES resemble Trump.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    JdL (profile), 16 Aug 2019 @ 2:57pm

    When cops act as criminals...

    ...they should be treated as criminals.

    Barr sounds frightened. He should be, especially if he takes no definite steps to clean up the rotten state of law enforcement in America today. People are fed up with getting pushed around by cops who don't know the law and don't care.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    dickeyrat, 16 Aug 2019 @ 2:57pm

    As I read this piece, I couldn't help thinking of the women I've known who were regularly abused by their fathers and husbands who wore badges. In not one single case, was any officer prosecuted, or outed in any way, or had any consequence whatsoever, outside of fully getting away with it. And then there's the obedience required from us lowly citizens by police, in order to adequately march alongside, and "protect" innocent Nazis from rampaging "terrorist" Antifa scum, who could possibly be armed with milkshakes. And no so-called "police reform" programs could possibly be beneficial, when they were proposed under a Negro-Muslim-Socialist President who was born in Kenya. Police are to be honoured and humbly respected by us lowly gutter-bound civilians when they cower away from active mass-shooters such as at Parkland High School. (I mean, for all we know, the gunman might be a fellow Trump-lover!) We must kowtow to, and quietly admire and obey anyone who wears The Badge! After all, this is simply how things are done in a Fascist dictatorship. Your orders are: GET USED TO IT!!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2019 @ 3:45pm

    "We must have zero tolerance for resisting police. This will save lives."

    =

    Comply or Die.
    (Safety first!!!)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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