In the wake of Friday morning’s bloodbath at a Colorado movie theater, America struggles to figure out who or what to blame.
They’ve obviously ruled out the shooter.
James Holmes, 24, will be arraigned in a Colorado courtroom this morning and charged with a spree killing at a midnight debut screening of the new Batman film The Dark Knight Rises that at last count left 12 dead and 58 wounded. Based on the total number of victims, the event would constitute the largest lone-wolf mass shooting in American history. Although he reportedly surrendered to police outside the theater clad from head to toe in riot gear and told them he was the “Joker,” he has apparently not formally confessed and has yet to be convicted, so journalistic etiquette dictates that Holmes be called the alleged gunman.
But even if he hurled the tear-gas canisters and fired the rounds, no man is an island, correct? At best, we’re all tiny non-autonomous fiefdoms in a sprawling continent. We are mere cells in a giant organism, little pieces in a huge puzzle, and when one of the pieces doesn’t quite fit anymore, the rest of the puzzle must be blamed.
So obviously “society” is to blame. But not all of society, because that would include the countless members of society who are blaming society for this. So what part of society is to blame?
My latest from the Inferno, looking into the intersection between prepuce-pruning and PC…
It pleased me to read of a Cologne court’s decision to give the legality of child-circumcision the snip. Even a crotchety old anti-statist like myself can appreciate the few laws that uphold some level of liberty and isonomy in the current set-up, flawed though the arbiters may be. In a culture which prohibits the abomination known as female genital mutilation, the extension of such legal concerns to Y-chromosomers has been a long time coming.
Unfortunately, not everyone shares my sentiments. Beyond the gynocentric mewling of various women’s groups playing Oppression Olympics, Muslims and Jews—two factions who view cock-slicing as holy writ—united in uproar over the ruling (Middle East peace-mediators, take note!). Naturally, in post-Hitler, PC Germany, the whiff of Cologne sent prominent politicos into spasms of supplication.
As Mad Max wrote: “The state calls its own violence law, but that of the individual, crime.” This doesn’t surprise me in the slightest…
The Metropolitan police attempted to keep the disciplinary record of PC Simon Harwood secret from the family of Ian Tomlinson, the newspaper seller he struck with a baton and pushed to the ground at G20 protests, it can now be reported.
Lawyers for the force tried and failed to argue that disclosing the litany of complaints about Harwood’s conduct would have breached his privacy, saying the officer’s disciplinary history did not have “any relevance” to Tomlinson’s death.
Harwood, 45, who was found not guilty of Tomlinson’s manslaughter on Thursday, had repeatedly been accused of using excessive force during his career, including claims he punched, throttled, kneed and unlawfully arrested people.
From Russia Today. Talk about a gangland execution!
Hearing a knock on his door at 1:30 am, a perplexed Florida man answered the door to see what kind of unannounced visitors were outside. Holding a gun for security, 26-year old Andrew Scott was instantly shot dead by police after he opened the door.
It took the Lake County Police Department an hour and a half to realize they had killed an innocent man.
Luna @ A Hopeful Pessimist on truants, prozzies, paternalism, and Social Darwinism.
Well, I’m back again. I didn’t intend to take this long to write again, but due to technological troubles, I was offline for awhile, thus making it impossible to post more entries. This is not ideal because my lead in story in this post is now somewhat older news. Anyhow, what I hope to do in this entry is combine several possible posts that I have been planning to do in the past, so hopefully, despite my lack on consistency in writing here, I will partially make it up by killing several birds with one stone, so to speak.
Okay, I want to start this post with a story I originally came across on attackthesystem.com, about an incident in Montgomery County in the grand old State of Texas, where a 17-year-old high-school student by the name of Diane Tran was sentenced to a day in jail and a fine for contempt of court (I believe) because of missing too many days of school. This despite the fact that the student in question was working two jobs to support her siblings because of her parents splitting up, and despite missing some classes over being extremely tired from that out-of-school work (Who wouldn’t be?), she apparently managed to make the honour roll. Anyhow this story became viral and spread around the world, prompting outrage and leading to some donation campaign set up specifically for Tran, with a website set up for that purpose. Anyhow, what eventually happened was that the charges were dropped, with Mr. Judge Moriarty backing down from his hard-line stance to some extent. Anyways, if you are curious about this story, there are more articles here, and probably even more if you care to search for them on the net. Now when I came across this story, I was immediately interested because I had read some articles about a county in Texas with a Judge who was well known for incarcerating students who were chronic truants from school, and I had planned to write a blog post about two articles about this 1, 2.More…
An old friend of mine is in some trouble in the Czech Republic. I would really appreciate it if ATS readers would sign this petiton: https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/help-free-d-randall-blythe-prage-czech-republic-where-he-falsely-accused-commiting-manslaughter/3dsZD2Gd
His wife is interviewed on Czech television here:http://www.blesk.cz/clanek/video-udalosti/177880/manzelka-metalisty-randyho-blythe-je-mi-lito-smrti-fanouska.html I’ve known Randy and Cindy for about 15-20 years each. They’re good folks. This case is a crock.
It was a brilliant move by far Right (but oh so likable) Chief Justice Roberts to side with the Dem-appointed Justices and uphold ObamaCare. After all, this is a massive victory for corporate power, forcing citizens to buy an expensive insurance product that won’t serve our needs very well but will profit industry, in lieu of receiving real health care.
Obamacare and its corporate mandate were born on the Right (as in Heritage Foundation) as a way to destroy the political prospects of any single payer system that would cover all Americans with a tax-funded system of guaranteed medical care. This is the way all other industrial societies protect the right to health care, by taking it out of the hands of the giant insurance industry. The right to health care is like the right to not be enslaved – there are no half measures, and the insurance industry is the slave master.
Roberts may have brilliantly scored a “4-fer” victory:
1.) He now has an interesting historic legacy.
2.) He and his Dem-appointed colleagues have given huge new powers to corporations, and further reduced the rights of citizens.
I’m sure most Americans are mighty proud of the fact that Julian Assange is so frightened of falling into the custody of the United States that he had to seek sanctuary in the embassy of Ecuador, a tiny and poor Third World country, without any way of knowing how it would turn out. He might be forced to be there for years. “That’ll teach him to mess with the most powerful country in the world! All you other terrorists and anti-Americans out there — Take Note! When you fuck around with God’s country you pay a price!”
How true. You do pay a price. Ask the people of Cuba, Vietnam, Chile, Yugoslavia, Iraq, Iran, Haiti, etc., etc., etc. And ask the people of Guantánamo, Diego Garcia, Bagram, and a dozen other torture centers to which God’s country offers free transportation.
You think with the whole world watching, the United States would not be so obvious as to torture Assange if they got hold of him? Ask Bradley Manning. At a bare minimum, prolonged solitary confinement is torture. Before too long the world may ban it. Not that that would keep God’s country and other police states from using it.
You think with the whole world watching, the United States would not be so obvious as to target Assange with a drone? They’ve done it with American citizens. Assange is a mere Aussie.
And Ecuador and its president, Rafael Correa, will pay a price. You think with the whole world watching, the United States would not intervene in Ecuador? In Latin America, it comes very naturally for Washington. During the Cold War it was said that the United States could cause the downfall of a government south of the border … with a frown. The dissolution of the Soviet Union didn’t bring any change in that because it was never the Soviet Union per se that the United States was fighting. It was the threat of a good example of an alternative to the capitalist model.
Program with Israel pre-clears Israeli travelers from immigration and customs into the United States. “Special friendship” says Napolitano. Listen to the interview here.
Homeland Security Sec’y Defends Controversial Grant Program
Secretary Speaks: Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano speaks to staff at the Forward’s offices.
Jews face special risks that require vigilance, though there is no “specific, credible threat” against Jewish targets, Janet Napolitano, secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, told the Forward during a visit to the newspaper’s New York offices.
In a June 4 meeting with the paper’s editorial staff, Napolitano cited the particular exposure she said Jews face in explanation of a DHS security grant program that mostly benefits Jewish groups.
The US Supreme Court‘s decision on health-care reform Thursday opens the door to a major expansion of health insurance, affecting households across America.
- Obama health-care law: Supreme Court upholds it in entirety
- Health-care reform law: How Supreme Court ruling affects families
- Outside Supreme Court, health-care ruling ignites cauldron of emotion
- The Monitor’s View: In health-care decision, Roberts rules of order reign
- Opinion: Roberts ruling on Obamacare rebukes partisanship with moderation
From The Guardian.
Personally, I like this ruling.
by Kate Connolly
Jewish and Muslim leaders were united on Wednesday in their condemnation of a German court’s decision to in effect outlaw the circumcision of boys after a judge deemed that the religious practice amounted to bodily harm.
Representatives of the two religious communities called the ruling insensitive and discriminatory, saying it was an attack on centuries of religious tradition.
A judge at a Cologne court said that the circumcision of minors went against a child’s interests because it led to a physical alteration of the body, and because people other than the child were determining its religious affiliation.
Religious leaders said the court had stepped into a minefield with its decision, which undermined their religious authority and contravened Germany‘s constitution.
Ali Demir, chairman of the Religious Community of Islam in Germany, said: “I find the ruling adversarial to the cause of integration and discriminatory against all the parties concerned.”
Dieter Graumann, president of Germany’s Central Council of Jews, called it “an egregious and insensitive measure” which amounted to “an unprecedented and dramatic intervention in religious communities’ right of determination”.
The ruling followed a lengthy legal battle, sparked when a Muslim couple decided to have their son circumcised, specifically for religious reasons, by a Muslim doctor in Cologne. The doctor, identified only as Dr K, carried out the circumcision on the four-year old boy in November 2010, before giving the wound four stitches. The same evening, he visited the family at home to check up on the boy. When the boy began bleeding again two days later, his parents took him to the casualty department of Cologne’s University hospital. The hospital contacted the police, who then launched an investigation. The doctor was charged with bodily harm, and the case was taken to court.
While the court acquitted Dr. K on the grounds that he had not broken any law, it concluded that circumcision of minors for religious reasons should be outlawed, and that neither parental consent nor religious freedom justified the procedure. It ruled that in future doctors who carried out circumcisions should be punished.
The court weighed up three articles from the basic law: the rights of parents, the freedom of religious practice and the right of the child to physical integrity, before coming to the conclusion that the procedure was not in the interests of the child.
Well, here it is, folks: The Supreme Court’s ruling upholding the “individual mandate” provision in the Affordable Care Act, aka “ObamaCare.” As of 2014, all Americans will pay a portion of their taxes to an insurance company of their choice instead of to Uncle Sam (or Uncle will come calling).
Canned consternation from the usual critics on the right, of course — you know, the people who brought you HMOs, Medicare Part D, and RomneyCare, all in the name of “free enterprise.” Forcing you to buy “insurance,” whether for yourself or someone else, is only bad when Democrats or New York’s “Five Families” do it.
In reality, the right should be celebrating CannibalCare … er, ObamaCare. Not only did Republicans lay three decades of its groundwork, not only was the template for the law laid down by none other than GOP presidential Mitt Romney, not only was the deciding SCOTUS vote cast by a George W. Bush appointee, Chief Justice John Roberts, but it’s the ultimate triumph of “privatization.”
Huh? What? Yes, “privatization.”
From The Ruling Class
Yesterday, the Roberts court affirmed the Obama defense of the so-called “Affordable Care Act.” To me, it is not a particularly surprising result. Two years ago, I noted thatthe Obama Admin’s principal argument relied on the classification of the mandate as a tax and that the legislation–all 2000 pages plus–was carefully crafted to categorize any penalty as an excise tax. As I wrote at the time, Obama–his “socialist” caricature notwithstanding–wasn’t arguing the case by making appeals to the Communist Manifesto. He was merely relying on past American constitutional precedent. He had “the firm’s” legal team carefully draft the new rules of the health care political economy to pass compliance strictly with the firm’s monopoly power to tax.
As crime rates drop around the country, a somewhat predictable but disturbing trend is starting to pop up in big cities across America. In a number of large metropolitan areas throughout the country, where guns are severely restricted, crime is actually increasing. In fact, it’s increasing at a rather alarming rate.
Take the notoriously Anti-Gun city of Chicago, where in the first 6 months of this year the city has already seen over 228 Homicides. Last weekend alone, Fifty-three people were shot; nine of them fatally, in what’s becoming a deadly weekly trend on the streets of Chicago. From Flash Mobs attacking shoppers on Michigan Avenue, to the Gang Violence that’s plaguing the city, Chicago has become more violent than the deadly war zones in the Middle East.
While gun control advocates point to Chicago as being a major reason for needing stricter gun laws, what they fail to mention is that nationally crime rates are actually dropping. In areas that actually respect your right to bear arms, crime rates have been dropping year after year.
Last week, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced that violent crime decreased 4 percent in 2011.
So why are national rates dropping when places like Chicago become deadlier?
While national crime rates are dropping, the cities mentioned above are becoming gang infested warzones with sky rocketing murder rates. If these gun control measures actually worked, then why are these cities all in the middle of unprecedented violent crime wave?
When will they ever learn?
Chicago’s answer to the problem is almost too stupid to believe. This week Chicago is encouraging residents to turn in their guns in exchange for a $100 gift card. The Chicago Police Department is asking residents to get guns out of their homes and turn them in during their annual gun turn-in program, “Don’t Kill a Dream, Save a Life.”
Anyone who turns in a gun will get a $100 gift card, no questions asked!
In a public statement, the City of Chicago said they are encouraging:
“people come out that have weapons lying around the house, or weapons, maybe, that they don’t necessarily want in their house. This is a chance to get some money for their weapon, and get another dangerous weapon on the street.”
I fail to see how asking law abiding citizens to turn in their guns and leave their homes defenseless is a viable option for solving the violent crime issue in Chicago. I mean let’s get real here, we all know criminals are not going to be the ones showing up to turn their guns; so who are they really targeting with this campaign? If you ask me, it seems like all they’re doing is making it that much easier for the criminals to rob and steal without fear of being held accountable.
From The Anarchist Library.
Bob Black spits on his hands, hoists the black flag, and considers slitting throats.
Kudos to Luna920 for bringing this to my attention.
We’ve all heard the phrase “law and order” — as if they go together. The slogan assumes that law promotes order, and that crime subverts order. “Anarchists believe the phrase law and order is one of the great deceptions of our age.” I’m going to discuss just one of the reasons why this slogan is a lie. One reason is that law itself may create or perpetuate disorder. This is a familiar anarchist theme which I will not go into here. Another reason, which is not familiar, is that often crime promotes order. Crime can be a source of order — especially where the law isn’t — and this is surprisingly common. If crime is ever a source of social order, it can only be an anarchist source of social order. This will be my thesis here.
Holder gets a Goading @ TakiMag.
by Jim Goad
The House Oversight Committee voted last week to begin Contempt of Congress proceedings against porpoise-faced Attorney General Eric Holder. Although the vote was a reaction to Holder’s stonewalling in the Fast and Furious gun-walking scandal, America’s wormy, mustachioed AG has shown flagrant contempt for the popular will during his entire tenure. With ghastly consistency, he has enforced laws that appeal to his radical progressive agenda and ignored the ones he doesn’t like.
Only two weeks after being sworn in as Attorney General, Holder called America a “nation of cowards” regarding racial matters. Way to get started on the good foot and charm the socks off the heartland, fella! The only cowards I see are the spineless geeks terrified of being called “racist” and the yella-bellies who are morbidly afraid of honestly examining other explanations for disparities in crime and income besides ye olde bugaboo of “racism.”
Although the story has largely been suppressed by the leftist media’s barking megaphones, Holder’s racial double standards were made evident in his refusal to prosecute the New Black Panthers in Philadelphia for voter intimidation during the 2008 presidential election. Department of Justice attorney J. Christian Adams had claimed, “I was told by voting section management that cases are not going to be brought against black defendants on [behalf] of white victims.”
After working with US intelligence for months, the Mexican navy said it believed it had nabbed a big prize in a known Guadalajara narco-haven: the son of Mexico’s top fugitive drug lord.
But it turned out they got the wrong man.
The man arrested on Thursday as the presumed son of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman is really Felix Beltran Leon, 23, and not Alfredo Guzman Salazar, as the Mexican navy had presented him, the attorney general’s office said on Friday.
We’ve heard of police very frequently overreacting to things and sending in SWAT teams when they aren’t necessary. We’ve also heard of them sending SWAT teams to the wrong place. But this latest story, found via Radley Balko (who tracks these things like no other) may be the most insane yet. It involves police sending a SWAT team and breaking into the wrong house (whose front door was open) in response to some internet trolls. I’m not kidding.
From The UK Libertarian.
Davy, the UK Libertarian, hoists moralistic tax-happy statists on their own petard. Logical, potent, and apt, if emotionally-oversaturated at times.
[WARNING: The following article contains images that some people may (and should) find disturbing. If you don’t want to see fairly graphic images then stop reading now or scroll down with a soft touch]
David Cameron has described Jimmy Carr as “Morally wrong” for allegedly paying as low as 1% on his income taxes thanks to a scheme known as K2, advised by his accountant as perfectly legal and used by celebrities on both the left and the right.
But he’s not not behaving unethically, in fact, morally, he’s in the right.
To explain why, I will be asking you to stick with me through a seemingly unrelated tangent but, if we’re lucky, it will tie up in the end.
The following earnings are made up for the sake of simplicity but the logic holds true whether you scale up or down:
To begin let’s suppose Jimmy Carr is a model tax-payer and let’s say he earns £1,000,000 gross profit in the 2012 tax year. Without any exemptions and filing purely as an individual he would expect to pay close to 50% directly to the Inland Revenue. At that rate he is handing over approximately £500,000 to David Cameron’s government.
Let’s take a look at some of the ways that £500,000 will be spent once the government has its (apparently righteous) hands on it:
At least £44,000 of this half a million will go towards “Defence”. The quandry for the informed and ethical man (but not the amoral/immoral) when pondering this contribution, however, is that “Defense” is really just a euphemism for Offense. Still etched in the memories of anybody who takes a passing interest in politics (regardless of which side of the fence they fall) is that spark of defiance in February of 2003 when almost a million people marched through London in protest against the proposal to wage war against Iraq. They chanted “No more war!” They screamed the justification was immoral. Some even cried for people they had never met, guessing before the fact just how horrific the consequences could be. They were right.
SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) — The story captured the attention of the nation back in 1976. Three Bay Area men were convicted and received life sentences. Now, one of the men convicted of kidnapping a bus full of children and burying them in a van more than 35 years ago is a free man. Wednesday night, 57-year-old Richard Schoenfeld was released from the California Men’s Colony in San Luis Obispo.
Schoenfeld has spent the past 36 years in prison. His brother tells the ABC7 News I-Team Rick has served his time and that he’s not a danger to anyone.
Schoenfeld’s family told the I-Team about the scene at midnight when a state parole agent delivered him home to his 89-year-old mother on the Peninsula.
Dan Noyes: “What were his first words?”
John Schoenfeld: “I can’t believe I’m here.”
It’s been 36 years since Rick Schoenfeld, his brother Jim and accomplice Fred Woods kidnapped 26 children and their school bus driver in Chowchilla, drove them to a Livermore quarry and made them climb down into a moving van they had buried there. Sixteen hours later — before the kidnappers could call in their $5 million ransom demand — the bus driver and the kids dug their way out and found help.
“About 7 o’clock we got dug out, we handed all the kids up, I handed the kids up to the other boys and we got out,” bus driver Ed Ray said of the ordeal.
“It was a horrible crime, it affected the kids, it affected their families and the community and it was not a good thing,” John Schoenfeld said.
John Schoenfeld says his brother understands the seriousness of the crime and that he’s a changed man and no longer a threat to anyone. His first request after leaving prison was a chocolate milkshake.
Schoenfeld says he might give Rick a job at his motorcycle shop.
“It’s a huge step, I mean we’ve been without Rick for 36 years, Rick and Jim, and this is the first step to get Jim out also,” John Schoenfeld said.
Rick schoenfeld’s release comes as a shock to the victims who expected all three kidnappers to serve their full life sentences.