Afternoon Links

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

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31 Responses to “Afternoon Links”

  1. #1 |  Chris Berez | 

    Hilarious Facebook controversy

    I’ll bet that photo is pretty popular at all of the plushie websites right now. I’m not going to check, though.

  2. #2 |  Cynical in CA | 

    “What We Own.”

    In America, one doesn’t even own oneself. That doesn’t leave room for ownership of much of anything, does it?

  3. #3 |  Cynical in CA | 

    “The Maryland dog park shooter has been charged with two misdemeanors.”

    That’ll teach federal agents not to use their omnipotence indiscreetly.

  4. #4 |  Cynical in CA | 

    “Feds say no charges against school officials in Pennsylvania laptop spying case.”

    All of your childrens are belong to us.

  5. #5 |  Cynical in CA | 

    “Kathryn Johnston’s family will get $4.9 million from the city of Atlanta.”

    The generosity of the taxpayers of Atlanta in atoning for the misbehavior of its monopoly protection racket knows no bounds.

  6. #6 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Feds say no charges against school officials in Pennsylvania laptop spying case.

    Feds: “Ok, then everyone’s agreed. This is a no win situation, so we’ll say they had no criminal intent so we can get out from under this fiasco and get back to prosecuting porn producers and medical marijuana clinics. You people in the back. Yeah, you teachers union people. This is what you wanted. Are you ok with this?”

  7. #7 |  Howlin' Hobbit | 

    mashups like Smells Like a Rockin’ Robin are a big reason I loves me some intarwebs.

  8. #8 |  Ron | 

    Horrible decision in the PA laptop case. Unsuprising, though, since educrats get almost as much preferential treatment by prosecutors as the police.

  9. #9 |  Bob | 

    Ok, so… cops WILL throw one of their own under the bus for shooting a dog, so long as it’s not one of their OWN.

    The public outcry is taking a toll, it appears.

  10. #10 |  perlhaqr | 

    RIAA and NAB don’t go far enough in promoting obsolete tech. I want the iPhone 5 to be saddled with a Betamax and 8 Track player, too. Possibly one of those wax cylinder gramophones, as well.

  11. #11 |  Peter Ramins | 


    If it could run on coal oil that would be fabulous as well.

  12. #12 |  Jozef | 

    The generosity of the taxpayers of Atlanta in atoning for the misbehavior of its monopoly protection racket knows no bounds.

    Yeah, I’m now trying to figure out how much my share is and whether there is any punishment-free way to withhold that money.

  13. #13 |  J sub D | 

    “Clearly a terrible wrong was committed in this tragic case. In the end, the city was forced to step up and right this wrong, as well as can be under our system of laws,” said Nicholas Moraitakis, an attorney for Dozier. “It is always gratifying to be on the side seeking and receiving justice.”

    Kathryn Johnston remains dead and her killers were never charged with murder.

  14. #14 |  Matt I. | 

    The only reason charges were filed against the dog shooter was because of the massive publicity the case received. This was due to a huge effort on the part of its owners. Don’t forget that inititally the local police didn’t even bother looking into the case.

    The best advice for anyone who is a victim of crime by the police is to IMMEDIATELY go to the media (perhaps wait until the police file false statements if you have video evidence of the crime).

  15. #15 |  Eric | 

    FM receivers in all devices everywhere is a great idea. Just look at how the market has responded to the devices that already have them: the “iPod killer” Zune, or the “iPod killer” Creative Zen, or the “iPod killer” Sony Walkman mp3 player, or the “iPod killer” Dell DJ.

  16. #16 |  Cynical in CA | 

    Regarding the federal dog shooter, it is important to remember that the shooter was acting outside his capacity as a LEO. This is integral to the charging of the officer. Most LEO dog shootings occur under color of law, which as we all know immediately exonerates the officer.

    No provable malintent, no personal gain, but acting outside legal authority — that is why the misdemeanor charges were granted. This hardly constitutes being “thrown under the bus,” as the officer will likely plead no contest and be sentenced to probation, if the charges aren’t ultimately dismissed outright. It’s more like the best compromise the citizens are going to get from the State in this case.

  17. #17 |  Cyto | 

    #14 – Last night there was a story on the local news in Orlando, FL about a video of cops taking down a guy standing near an arrest and filing a false report about his actions. (guy was standing, apparently talking on a cell phone near a lamp post on a curb as police in a cruiser arrested another man in the street, for those who saw it). The incident was captured from a high angle camera – perhaps a police surveillance camera or citizen on a balcony with a camcorder. I was checking in to a hotel at the time, so I missed most of the important details. The big story was that the media picked up the story of police lying on arrest reports and being proven wrong by video evidence. Perhaps the momentum is building.

  18. #18 |  Kid Handsome | 

    #17 – Saw that too. I think it was in Denver. Cops attacked the son of another cop (they didn’t know at time).

  19. #19 |  M. Zinnen | 

    Regarding the cop who shot the dog:

    “According to an initial police report, Shepherd said that Bear-Bear attacked Asia and then menaced him”

    I really don’t understand what the issue is here. Whether the husky attacked the other dog or was merely playing a little rough is beside the point. Shepherd, an LEO, claims the husky menaced him, and I see no reason at all to doubt this claim. In fact, I believe it 100%. As a life-long dog owner, I can attest that my dogs have always been able to sense evil, and have reacted accordingly.

  20. #20 |  Leon Wolfeson | 

    Eric – And the iPod. Of course, it’s not enabled in software on the iPod, but it’s there.

    This isn’t a comment in any way on the RIAA (I think my views about them have been aired elsewhere and before, in profane terms), but…it IS mildly ironic.

  21. #21 |  FedUpWithCops | 


    The story you comment on happend in Denver last year. The guy who was beaten by the Denver PD is the son of cop in Southern Colorado.

    And now, here is ANOTHER black eye for Denver PD where two cops beat on a citizen offering to testify on behalf of another citizen who got a failure to stop traffic ticket.,0,3693269.story

    The “fun” just never ends here in the Mile High City.

  22. #22 |  Aresen | 

    @ M. Zinnen | August 18th, 2010 at 9:06 pm

    Thanks, I needed that laugh!

  23. #23 |  The Liberty Papers »Blog Archive » City of Atlanta Agrees to Pay $4.9 Million to Kathryn Johnston’s Family; Vows to Change Police Culture | 

    […] Tip: The Agitator (who […]

  24. #24 |  EH | 

    #21: The best part about that second beating is that while he was merely detained he tried to take a picture of the officers, which is when they started beating him.

  25. #25 |  Cyto | 

    FedUpWithCops, Thanks for the link. I love the pollution of the language in these news stories. They term a beating of a completely innocent bystander by the police “excessive force” and it is handled by an internal investigation. Uhm, no. This is not “excessive force.”

    Excessive force would be when the police use more force than is necessary in executing their lawful duties, such as arresting a suspect in a crime. Rodney King was an example of excessive force. The guy was actually resisting arrest and they legitimately had the right to use some force – then they added excessive force on top of that necessary to execute the arrest.

    This case is clearly a felony assault and battery – and since he ended up in the hospital it could be mayhem, assault with intent to do great bodily harm, etc. depending on how it is defined locally. They have no real reason to even speak to the dog owner. I suppose they could legitimately ask him to keep his distance, but that is about it. In asking him for ID they’ve already crossed the line into intimidating a witness. They clearly didn’t like being photographed, so they beat the guy down and illegally detained him. Actually, you’ve got kidnapping in there as well – but because the police officers are a protected class even when operating outside the law they call it “false arrest”, which is very watered down and carries almost no consequence – at least when compared with the true charge of kidnapping and false imprisonment.

    Even the man’s own attorney accedes to the watered-down language, calling it “a clear case of excessive force”. Hell no! Don’t cede the high ground to these bastards. These particular cops clearly felt that the badge gave them impunity to intimidate and assault and then lock in a cage an innocent bystander who offered to act as a witness in defense against their charges. Use the true language that they would be using if the two guys in the video didn’t have on pretty blue dress-up costumes. They are guilty of:

    1. Assault – when they came up and began aggressively questioning the bystander.

    2. Battery (or the equivalent version of assault) – when they began hitting and grabbing the guy after he pulls out his camera phone

    3. Assault with intent to cause great bodily harm less than murder – that’s what they call it in a lot of jurisdictions when you keep beating on someone when they are down or when you beat them enough to send them to the hospital.

    4. Kidnapping – tying someones hands behind their back and tossing them in a car against their will is kidnapping.

    Wow, we’ve got a couple of top-shelf felonies already! And we haven’t even added in the stuff that involves the fact that they are cops.

    5. Filing a false police report – they attempted to charge him with “interference” which means they claimed he was interfering with their lawful duties. This is a lie. He was annoying them while they were executing their duties – perhaps not competently if the man’s story about the nature of the stop is to be believed. Annoying them is not the same as interfering with them. They added on “resisting arrest” – an unlawful arrest which had they had no basis for and no legal authority to execute. It really appears that they are arresting him for resisting arrest, when you cut out all of the other puffery.

    All in all, that’s a lot of criminal behavior to be sweeping under the administrative rug. I’m not sure why the police get to handle this internally and not in a court of law. If they didn’t have on their magic blue costumes that’s where this would be playing out. They’d be facing many tens of years behind bars for these few minutes of activity. Instead we get a behind-closed-doors review and a secret “disciplinary action has been taken” result. Unless there is a lot of public outcry. Then maybe they get fired or put on leave.

    Just think what would have happened if there had been no video. The guy would have been lucky to have the charges dropped. Then he’d be facing his own felony charges – which would be very tough to beat without a video. How often does this happen? How many people are in jail because they pissed off a cop? What if it wasn’t a suburban white dude on video with an attorney? How many years do we usually lock someone up for offering to testify in defense of a minor traffic ticket?

  26. #26 |  Cyto | 

    A little googling turned up the video of the kid on the cell phone. More evidence of the police complicity in covering up unlawful acts by individual officers – the video is being shot by a police surveillance camera. The camera is panned and zoomed in to the incident – until the officer clearly crosses the line… then the camera operator quickly pans away to make sure nothing else is caught on video. The police administrators then use the limited amount of video to assert that after reviewing the totality of the incident, including events not covered in the video, we are totally wrong and the only problem with the police action is a little problem with the paperwork.

  27. #27 |  Charlie O | 


    You’re correct. That was no case of “excessive force.” That was a mugging. They should be charged with aggravated batter. Both of those asswipes.

  28. #28 |  Kukulkan | 


    I notice that when the police officers arrest the dog walker, they carry him away from the front of the police cars. It seems to me that this was done to make sure their actions would not be recorded by the dash cameras. If the purpose of moving the dog walker to the rear of the police cruisers was to avoid the cameras, it would indicate that the police offers understood that their actions were – at the very least – improper.

  29. #29 |  Cynical in CA | 

    It’s a freaking miracle those two terrifying dogs survived. Lhasa Apsos are a uniquely ferocious breed and have long been known as cop-killers.

    /sometimes there’s just not enough sarcasm

  30. #30 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Cyto, if it were possible to impart only a tiny fraction of your sensibility into law enforcement, there is no doubt that civilization on earth would be measurably improved by it.

  31. #31 |  Michael Chaney | 

    As I’ve said, the “excessive force” bullshit allows them to turn criminal behavior (of which #25 above is a good explanation) into an administrative problem. Administrative problems are easy to deal with – a faux investigation, a couple of weeks of extra paid vacation for the year and they’re back on duty. Criminal charges aren’t as easy to sweep under the rug, although if you watch in Indy right now they’re doing a pretty good job of it.