I was over at Radley Balko’s place… Yeah, shut up. A girl needs her daily recommended allowance of gun-nut dog-loving libertarianism and I get mine from Balko and Say Uncle.
You read them and tell me if you don’t start to wonder just what the hell is going on with the paramilitarization of local police forces.
Lord knows I’m not ready to sit around drinking moonshine and laughing at the less fortunate (which I believe to be the main pastimes of libertarians, though I have no real evidence to back that up), but I do believe there’s something funky in the simultaneous trends to disarm regular folks and make battle-ready the police.
Ha, that sounds kind of like I believe there’s some grand conspiracy.
I think, though, that it’s an unfortunate coincidence.
Yes, so today Balko links to a story about how the Hell’s Angels just received $800,000 from the city of San Jose for killing the dogs of the Hell’s Angels in a raid.
Just think about that for a moment–the Hell’s Angels have lawyers.
Being a lawyer for the Hell’s Angels would have to be some of the most fun lawyering you could do, I would think.
Granted, if your Corporate Shill wife were just a couple of months away from giving birth to your child, herein called Tiny the Wonder Fetus, you should probably not think too hard about how awesome it would be to have a garage full of big old noisy slow moving Harleys you received in payment for a job well-done.
That’s what friends are for. I will spend the next little bit thinking about how awesome it would be if the Legal Eagle were a lawyer for the Hell’s Angels and how much I’d love to be invited to his annual client-appreciation picnics.
I’m trying to decide what to get Tiny since its shower is rapidly approaching. I wonder if they have infant-sized Harley Davidson t-shirts…
The militarization of the police forces shouldn’t come as a surprise, and I think that the cause is fairly obvious, the UN wants to take your guns away and form a One World Government that conducts all of its business in Chinese. No, wait, that’s not it.How about we criminalize a substance that is cheap and easy to get (when it’s not illegal) and addictive. We make it so risky (jailtime) to sell, that the price goes through the roof, and the profit margins are in the tens of thousands of percents.We don’t come up with any ideas to curb demand (oops, I forgot "Just Say No!"). To curb supply, we poison crops in South America (some of which were actually the ones that we wanted to poison), but we don’t try to improve the economic situation of the farmers, or make a meaningful attempt to help them raise other crops.We call it a war, but for this war, we don’t demand an exit strategy. These steps will generate a bunch of cash for the suppliers (foreign and domestic) that will allow them to buy expensive toys and weapons to facilitate their business. And when they escalate, we can cry that our poor police are losing an arms race. They need machine guns and armored vehicles. How do you think our police got Tommy Guns during Prohibition?
The Angels are notorious for….litigation. They are suing Disney right now for some shitty Tim Allen/John Travolta movie about a motorcycle club that infringes on the Angel’s trademark and/or copyright. I forget which.They routinely sue people who try to sell anything with the distinctive Angels logo without paying a licensing fee.
See, that would be fun lawyering.
My Hunter S. Thompson memory is hazy (which is as it should be), but wasn’t his lawyer retained by the Angels? I vaguely recall that Thompson met him while doing his participant-observer research with the Angels. The tommy guns were for union-busting. Check the date on most of the northeastern urban armories — most were built within a mile of rail yards in the immediate aftermath of the Great Strike of 1877 so that out-of-town Guardsmen shipped into town could be readily armed to suppress labor agitation.
Oscar Acosta was best known for defending Chicano "activists". He and Thompson met after the Hells Angels book came out.Speaking of Thompsons, the ‘Tommy Gun’ was developed between 1917 and 1919 as a was to sweep trenches clean of enemy troops. It wasn’t mass produced until 1921, too late for service in WWI.Thompsons may have been used by law-enforcement and hired goons to supress labor uprisings. But that is hardly the motivation for developing the weapon. Nor was building armories near rail lines. Movement of large numbers of troops and equipment, at that time, required rail travel. Regardless of whether the deployment was to France, Nicaragua or Matewan.
I thought local police forces around the country were getting more money these days because Homeland Security decided that things like the Mule Festival were potential terrorist targets and took HSA money away from places that have few targets (like NYC, evidently) and spread it around more. So now local police forces have lots more money to spend. So what are they going to spend it on?
> grand conspiracy … unfortunate coincidencePerhaps a ‘grand consipracy’ can be viewed as little more than a rhetorical device used to effectively illustrate the cumulative effect of an ‘unfortunate coincidence’.Perhaps also unfortunate coincidences are not coincidences at all but the simultaneous natural results of one flawed belief branching out into two separate areas."Spontaneous Conspiracy", if you will.A libertarian of course would argue that the belief in question is the belief that force can ever be rightfully used for anything other than defense. If you believe otherwise, then the thinking which allows you to forcefully take away someone’s gun is the same thinking which allows you to forcefully take away someone’s drugs.And if you’re gonna be throwing around all that force, you’re gonna need an army.
The Angles have lawyers on retainer, because so much of what they do these days is simple drug dealing.
Er, Angels. Not, Angles. Sorry.