Sunday Links

Sunday, January 30th, 2011

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46 Responses to “Sunday Links”

  1. #1 |  Mister DNA | 

    Radley, the first link goes to Reason‘s admin pages.

    The Captain America article was a good read.

  2. #2 |  Chuchundra | 

    The first link takes me to the admin screen. Pretty sure that’s not what you want.

  3. #3 |  Buddy Hinton | 

    on the wal*mart story it says that the man talking on the cell phone was arrested and released, so it is possible that police will end up feeling some heat on that one.

  4. #4 |  Tweets that mention Sunday Links | The Agitator -- | 

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Gangsters In Blue and FoxArtCultTech, teaist atts. teaist atts said: Sunday Links $ […]

  5. #5 |  Dave Krueger | 

    From the walmart story:

    Kirksville Police responded to and defused the situation with no injuries.

    It’s nice to know the cops defused the situation before the guy unloaded a few clips from his cellphone into innocent bystanders. I guess we should be happy no one was killed. It shows unprecedented restraint on the part of police that they let the cellphone user live despite having an excuse to use him for recreational target practice.

  6. #6 |  Ahcuah | 

    Link for the CNN story:

  7. #7 |  Buddy Hinton | 

    Here is one I almost missed. Police lied to the paramedics in the Christopher Harris case — said he ran into the wall on his own:

    One might argue about excessive force, or whether Christopher Harris knew they were police when the chase started, or whether Harris was surrendering, or whether tossing him around after he was knocked out was a criminal act.

    However, I don’t see how lying to the paramedic could be anything other than criminal. I don’t see how there could even be debate about that.

  8. #8 |  Dave Krueger | 

    It’s perfectly understandable that the LAPD was taken in by the cop who shot himself. Sure, they shut down a part of the city and made life a pain in the ass for a few thousand people, but it’s not like they did that for a mere citizen. They thought one of the ruling class had been hurt, not some insignificant member of the riffraff citizenry.

  9. #9 |  Cyto | 

    From the Atlanta “Red Dog Unit” story:

    Turner said he is taking the allegations seriously.

    “They can be assured that we’re going to do everything we can to get to the truth,” said Turner.

    Two of the three officers involved in the stop were also named in the infamous Atlanta Eagle bar raid that the city recently settled.

    Apparently words have no meaning. “seriously” and “everything we can” … right! They recently settled a case involving the same unit, apparently promising to avoid similar actions in the future… And we are to take you seriously when you promise to “get to the truth” – apparently at some nebulous point in the future? How long does it take? You’ve got all of the statements from all of the witnesses and participants – what other “getting to the truth” is there left to do? You either think what they did is OK or you don’t, but I don’t see where there is any room left for “truth seeking”.

    Besides which, didn’t you learn anything from the prior violations from this unit? I guess not… unless you learned that you are able to get away with pretty much anything – even up to murder.

  10. #10 |  Bob | 

    “The Atlanta Police Department expects its officers to be truthful at all times, to follow all policies and procedures and to follow all of the local, state and federal laws they are sworn to uphold. Failure to do so will not be tolerated,” Campos said.

    How the hell can anyone say that with a straight face?

  11. #11 |  Cyto | 

    The punch line from the Wal-Mart story about a report of a man with a gun pointed at his head:

    No weapon was found and the individual was taken into custody without incident less than 20 minutes after police arrived on scene.

    The individual was talking on a cell phone at the time of the incident. It’s likely that is the object the passerby identified as a gun.

    Sooooo… after identifying that no crime had in fact been committed, they still arrest the guy? With apologies to all those who decried Sara Palin for being incivil when she used the acronym, WTF?

  12. #12 |  Radley Balko | 

    Link should be fixed. Sorry about that.

  13. #13 |  primus | 

    The title of the item on the Walmart cell-phoner was wrong; it should have read “Idiot who can’t tell a cell phone from a gun causes Walmart lockdown.” Problem is you can’t tell who is and who isn’t an idiot. Said idiot should be charged with making a false report. Might stop more of this stupidity in the future.

  14. #14 |  Buddy Hinton | 

    And if you would like to contact the King County prosecutor about how the Christopher Harris case went, go here:

  15. #15 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Amber Lyon is one of those reporters (and I use the term loosely) who decides what she wants to report, and then goes out to fabricate some supporting evidence that usually doesn’t pass the smell test.

    I recommend reading a response to that story posted on the Honest Courtesan.

    The current child trafficking hysteria is really a crusade against prostitution formed by an alliance of conservative moralists who think sex is evil and liberal feminists who think that sex work exploits women (whether they do it voluntarily or not). Campaigning against prostitution doesn’t get much support, but when you dress it up to look like you’re rescuing children from slavery, suddenly government and the media is more than willing to uncritically promote your agenda verbatim. Amber Lyon doesn’t even make a pretense of fact checking or interviewing anyone who questions the numbers she mindlessly regurgitates.

  16. #16 |  primus | 

    Re: Captain America; How much cred does this guy have, when he doubts the existence of Ukraine, one of the largest of the states of the former USSR?

  17. #17 |  MassHole | 

    #16. He was being sarcastic.

  18. #18 |  Mattocracy | 

    “Man talking on cell phone causes Walmart parking lot lockdown.”

    Jesus. People always have to assume the worse. “Is that guy talking on his phone or or is it a gun? Hell, maybe he’s getting ready to detonate a bomb! Better take ’em out!”

  19. #19 |  sux2bme | 

    I bet the cellphone guy at Walmart even had a 32GB clip in his cellphone … the only thing that kind of capacity is needed for is to record as many police as possible. Legislation to limit is to “something reasonable” is pending …

  20. #20 |  LibertarianBlue | 

    Re: Captain America

    I’m always amused by conservative’s bitching about the entertainment industry. It’s not like any of these people heard of a device called a remote control or the concept of not going to see the movie/show/play etc. I remember when Transformers came out, they screamed “Anti-War left wing agenda!!! wargarble” It’s quite funny considering that the conservative movement always prides itself of having thick skin which in reality they don’t.

    RE: Walmart

    How the hell can you not tell the difference between a gun and a cell phone? The guy is lucky he didn’t get arrested for making a false report.

  21. #21 |  Highway | 

    Dave Kreuger, I think you’re only half-sarcastic, but you’re all right, three people I mentioned the cell-phone-in-the-parking-lot story to assumed that the guy was killed by the police, and viewed it as a relief that he was ‘only’ arrested for someone else minding his business, not killed by the police.

  22. #22 |  Z | 

    O/T, a very pleasant surprise out of Nebraska of all places:

    “US Appeals Court Overturns Conviction Based on a Lie
    Federal appeals court rules conviction based on self-contradictory police testimony must be reversed.”

    Yes. Really.

  23. #23 |  PW | 

    High school student in Virginia apprehended by police, expelled from school, and forced into a juvenile delinquent substance abuse “diversion” program on the grounds that he brought a “weapon” to school.

    The “weapon” was a ball point pen he was using as a spitball shooter.

  24. #24 |  PW | 

    Re. the Wal-Mart thing, cops can never be too careful around strangers in a parking lot talking on their cell phones.

    It could have been a “cell phone gun” as this cop claimed in another wrongful arrest last year:

  25. #25 |  SJE | 

    “The Atlanta Police Department expects its officers to be truthful at all times, to follow all policies and procedures and to follow all of the local, state and federal laws they are sworn to uphold. Failure to do so will not be tolerated,”

    Bob hit the nail on the head: how can he say this with a straight face? After Eagle nightclub, Johnson etc. Another great example of why we cannot let the cops investigate themselves.

  26. #26 |  Highway | 

    What SJE’s quote from the Atlanta Police really means:

    “The Atlanta Police Department *assumes* its officers to be truthful at all times, to follow all policies and procedures and to follow all of the local, state and federal laws they are sworn to uphold. Failure to *uphold this facade of plausible deniability* will not be tolerated,”

  27. #27 |  cApitalist | 

    The Hole of Malkovich = Greatest Movie Title Ever
    Loved the Captain America article.

  28. #28 |  Maria | 

    Wait, so the guy sitting and talking on his cell phone was really and truly arrested (sure, he was let go after (See guyz?! The system works!))? Just like that? Without doing anything at all? But that’s … Oh I can’t even pretend to be surprised and shocked anymore.

  29. #29 |  Bert | 

    So cops do a …ahem… cavity search ( presumably without being ordered to ) and the same cops also raid a gay bar for no reason. I think these cops have issues that they need to work out.

  30. #30 |  EH | 

    Bert: Sounds like they’re working out just fine.

  31. #31 |  Gordon | 

    Well, the CNN article does seem rather extreme, as does her other article, which is linked in the story: in which she claims “Hundreds of thousands of girls under the age of 18 are sold as sex slaves in the U.S.”

    So, I decided to take a quick look (gotta love the Internet and spreadsheets). According to the US Census (, there are approx 16,560,466 females between the ages of 10 and 17, inclusive (I interpolated the 15-19 group).

    If we take “hundreds of thousands” to mean, say, 200,000, that gives us about 1.21% of girls 10-17 — a bit over 12 in 1,000.

    That does seem rather high, doesn’t it?

  32. #32 |  Lefty | 

    from the walmart story:

    “Hughes said the incident was resolved prior to their active involvement.”

    “the individual was taken into custody”

  33. #33 |  CyniCAl | 

    •Atlanta PD anti-drug unit responsible for Kathryn Johnston shooting, raid on the Atlanta Eagle club now accused of conducting cavity searches during traffic stops.

    The Po-Pos — the biggest, baddest gang on the block.

  34. #34 |  J sub D | 

    “There’s a lot of stuff that’s happening around that unit. I thought it was the right thing for me to do … just bring them together and let them know what was happening they have to coordinate the perjury,” Turner said.

    Apologies in advance should the strike tag not work here.

  35. #35 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    “Paul M. Weber, president of the Los Angeles Police Protective League, said Stenroos was a ‘disgrace’.”

    Well yeah. Sounds like a case akin to the occasional cases of fire- fighters setting fires and then “coming to the rescue.”

    I don’t know what Stenroos motivation was for concocting this story, wasting taxpayer dollars, using up police resources, and inconveniencing many people he is supposed to be serving. My guess: He discovered that policing is not all action and adventure, he got disappointed, so he decided to make some action (and pity) for himself.

    And here’s a note to Weber of the LAPD protective assn: There are a lot more “disgraces” out there. This guy is just a particularly pathetic example. Maybe your union should stop protecting disgraceful officers.

  36. #36 |  Dave Krueger | 

    #31 Gordon

    If we take “hundreds of thousands” to mean, say, 200,000, that gives us about 1.21% of girls 10-17 — a bit over 12 in 1,000.

    That does seem rather high, doesn’t it?

    The most routinely quoted statistic for child prostitution in the U.S. is that 300,000 girls are “trafficked” for sex. Lyon uses that number in her larger story here. That statistic comes from the US DOJ website which gets it from a U of PA study. But, what it actually says is that 291,000 are “currently at risk of becoming victims of commercial sexual exploitation”. It does not say they are currently being trafficked.

    Another abused statistic is the claim that the average age of entry into prostitution in the U.S. is 12-14 (or sometimes 12 or 13). That comes from the same study, but the study was only counting minors. If you exclude the entire adult population from your average, you’re going to get a very low number.

    These organizations are aware that they are misleading the public, but they claim that the numbers don’t really matter (although they certainly do like using them a lot). All that matters is rescuing the victims of the sex slave trade. By the way, it’s no coincidence that they call themselves “abolitionists”. What they really are is prohibitionists because their goal is the elimination of prostitution at any cost (and the cost is borne most heavily by the women and children they claim to be trying to help because they are forced to operate without the protections and ethical incentives of legal businesses).

  37. #37 |  J sub D | 

    What they really are is prohibitionists because their goal is the elimination of prostitution at any cost (and the cost is borne most heavily by the women and children they claim to be trying to help because they are forced to operate without the protections and ethical incentives of legal businesses).

    But, but, but …

    God doesn’t approve of prostitution. Genocide, yes, but consenting adults exchanging money for entertainment, that’s sin.

  38. #38 |  Maggie McNeill | 

    #31 Gordon: I debunk those numbers in this column:

    #36 Dave: You might remember my debunking of that “average age of entry” myth, partially with the help of a poll of real working escorts, here (second question):

    Y’all may also be interested in reading my column this coming Tuesday (February 1st) because I’ll have a number of links to studies proving that claims of mega sporting events as magnets for prostitution and “trafficking” are, as the late Douglas Adams put it, a load of dingo’s kidneys. :-)

  39. #39 |  Marty | 

    # #13 | primus

    I’m always amazed at the number of bullshit 911 calls that originate from people driving around with cell phones- if someone’s grilling in their backyard, it’s a ‘house fire’, if someone’s napping in their car, it’s a ‘person slumped at the wheel’, if a cigarette is tossed in the mulch, it’s a ‘mulch fire’, if someone’s standing beside a bridge, it’s a ‘suicidal subject’. these idiots can’t be bothered to stop and look or ask if someone needs help. then, they go around feeling like they did some good…

  40. #40 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    #39 Marty:

    I’m with you on that one. How about this one: Send the police. My kid won’t get out of bed to go to school. I shit you not. Some people think everything is a crisis.

    We can certainly criticize police and other first responders for the way they handle incidents. But we should not forget who usually initiates these responses–citizens (because most police/fire/ems incidents are not “on views”). The inability of citizens to use common sense and/or deal with their own problems without the intervention of first responders has pretty much ruined 911. As Peter Moskos (See his blog and book “Cop in the Hood”) would say, 911 is great for heart attacks and fires, but not so great for the majority of police issues. Moskos believes that 911 should be totally revised, especially for police-related calls, since most incidents do not require an immediate police response. I totally agree.

  41. #41 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    “There’s good chance that anti-Mubarak resentment would carry with it anti-U.S. resentment and anti-Israel resentment. To put a finer point on it: the enemies of al Qaeda’s enemy could be al Qaeda’s friend.”

    Yup. That is how it tends to work out. Support the Muhajadeen in Afghanistan to spite the Soviets, later you get Al Queda. Support the Shah of Iran to interfere with oil nationalization. In comes the Ayatollah. I believe these cases a related to what the CIA calls “blowback.”

  42. #42 |  croaker | 

    WalMart: If you see something, sue something.

  43. #43 |  Bot | 

    CNN has a reporter named Amber Lynn on this story?

    No wait, Amber Lyon. Must be a professional career name change thing.

    My bad.

  44. #44 |  the innominate one | 

    Unfortunately, I can’t find this image on teh intertubes right at the moment, but once upon a time Tom the Dancing Bug did one cartoon “Citizen Alert: Dangerous Gang terrorizes Los Angeles”, with drawings of LAPD, stating that the gang had its own particular colors, insignia, hand signals and hierarchy, and that they jealously guarded their territory from encroachment by other gangs.

    Just pitch perfect.

  45. #45 |  J.S. | 

    A bit OT, regarding the “war on cops”:

    Audio turns up of cops arresting a man in a dv case on spurious reasons, and he was found guilty of resisting… but audio tells another story of how man got a big gash on his head.

  46. #46 |  Ciaran | 

    Must have been one really old cellphone to be the same size as a gun.