from the with-great-power-comes-a-whole-lot-of-complaining dept
Tech-savvy anarchists ran rings around the NYPD during last week’s Ferguson-related protests — and cops are now on edge over what the renegades may be able to pull off after a ruling in the Eric Garner case.The overt message is that the NYPD can't keep up with decentralized opposition. That's right on top. The underlying message is that the NYPD still hasn't stopped sending its uninvited officers to various locales to gather intelligence/annoy the locals/rack up per diem charges.
Yes. The NYPD sent detectives to gather intel at the Ferguson protests. These are the takeaways from the NYPD's bumptious interlopers. The NYPD can't stop anything. Protesters are "running rings" around the technologically inept force -- one of the largest and most highly-trained in the nation.
Cue the whining:
A “technology gap” … favors the activists, many of whom have the newest electronic gear, sources said.Can you feel the resentment? These cops (all unnamed) hate the fact that they're being outwitted by a class of people they obviously feel superior to. There's no "technology gap" here. The cops have laptops, WiFi, smartphones and access to the same social media services. It's just that one group knows how use these tools to coordinate efforts -- and it isn't the group with millions of dollars and years of training behind them.
“A lot of these anarchists are from the Occupy Wall Street group. They are little rich kids, little techie brats,’’ a source said.
“They get their money from Mommy and Daddy. And they travel from the West Coast to the East Coast and everywhere in between to disrupt events that involve corporate America, world summits, civil rights and especially those that involve law enforcement.”
“They have their little MacBook Air computers, their Wi-Fi, their smartphones, and they’re off to the races. We’re reacting to these situations, which means we are not fully in control of them,” the source said.
If this is how easily the nation's top police department is tripped up by "new" tech like Airbooks and WiFi, it should just call it a day and disband its (mostly self-) touted counterterrorism unit, as Marcy Wheeler points out.
If I were a NYC taxpayer, I’d call for the CT squad to be shut down right away. Partly because of the insubordination in the face of people peacefully protesting. But just as significantly, because of this claimed helplessness in the face of a far easier target than they’re ostensibly paid to pursue.Or maybe give the NYPD the benefit of the doubt. Surely, it can adapt to meet the challenges of this connected era? The unnamed officers state their concern about possible (now definite) protests following the grand jury's decision in Eric Garner's death at the hands of a plainclothes police officer (spoiler alert: no indictment), but they have a finely-honed plan in place to disrupt the disrupters.
“We’re expecting strong reaction and demonstrations when the decision comes down,” one source said.If you can't beat 'em, beat 'em.
Another source said: “The cops on standby will be in riot gear. That means helmets and sticks.”