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What Sandra Bland Illustrates About the “Right to Abuse”

2015 July 22

If you haven’t seen it already, here is a (doctored, but still damning), video of Sandra Bland’s arrest.

Note that she did nothing which would warrant arrest and was taken into custody on what amounts to a freestanding “resisting arrest” warrant.

Her real crime was “disrespect of cop,” of course. She didn’t put out her cigarette when asked, she was annoyed to be stopped.

Racism appears to have been operative here, but I want to point out something else. Being black is also a proxy for “no one important.” “No one important” is proxy for “as a cop or other authority figure, I can do what I want to you.”

Sandra Bland clearly knew her rights. Sandra Bland is dead. (Sandra Bland may well be dead because she knew her rights and the cop didn’t want to go to trial over that arrest. Or it may have been punishment for an “uppity black.”)

You have precisely and only the rights that you can enforce, the rights that you have the power to enforce. You have no other rights, and you never did.

“You” can be a group. If a group of citizens is strong enough, it can insist upon being treated according to what the law actually requires (or even better than the law requires, as in the case of, say, bankers). Such a group has rights. But they have those rights only because they can hold anyone who violates those rights accountable and that ability is well-known.

People don’t like when powerful individuals say “Do you know who I am?” but that’s a simple assertion of rights. It’s a way of saying, “You can’t do certain things to me, because I can retaliate.”

We have an ideology that everyone should be treated the same before the law. In America, and indeed every country, it is untrue. Some people are always more equal before the law. Of course, that it is always untrue does not mean that in some places and times it is more true than others.

Here in Toronto, the man who filmed former mayor Rob Ford doing crack was sentenced to jail. Ford was followed by police for months, so in addition to the crack video, they have plenty of other evidence of his drug use. Rob Ford has never seen the inside of a courtroom, let alone a jail cell. He never will.

But a message has been sent: Dare to try and blackmail someone important like Ford for committing a crime, and you will go to jail, and the “important” criminal will not.

Some animals are more equal than others.

The Black Lives Matter movement is an attempt to notify police that blacks are no longer fair game for abusers; that you can’t get your rocks off killing them; that there are consequences. It is an attempt to say, “Blacks have rights.” They aren’t even really trying to stop the sort of abuse in the arrest video; they’re just trying to stop it from turning into the final abuse: murder by cop.

This is America. And this is your lesson in power. Real power.


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76 Responses
  1. Kodachrome permalink
    July 22, 2015

    And it should be noted, because of the ongoing discussion of Bernie Sanders and his response to Black Lives Matter, that none of this is fixed by economic advancement for Black people.

    In fact, it’s often worse with wealth.

    The sort of resentment, humiliation, the desire to exhibit your power to Black people is often greater when the Black person is wealthier or more successful (or the white person poorer and less successful.)

    And there’s certainly more suspicion with wealth. Why are you driving that nice car? What are doing in this neighborhood? What do you really do for a living? You’re really a drug dealer. A thief. A pimp. A whore. Affirmative action. Car thief. Welfare paid for that. My taxes paid for that.

  2. V. Arnold permalink
    July 22, 2015

    @ Ian;
    He real crime was…
    HER real crime was…

    Look, America is a walking, talking, piece of racist, bigoted, pile of shit!
    Post racial? That’s a standing editorial joke!
    Obama is a piece of uncle Tom shit! Another cruel joke on the few Americans who actually get it.
    I live in another country and have zero fear of police; friendly and non-combative; I live in a country ruled by a military junta!!!
    Americans had better, but won’t, wake up to reality; they’re thoroughly, completely, unequivocally, fucked.
    And yet? Nevermind…all is lost…
    Black people? Get the fuck out while you can. You’ll get death, but no justice…

  3. Ian Welsh permalink
    July 22, 2015

    If blacks had the same amount of money that whites do, on average, I strongly suspect they would be much safer after a period in which they showed their clout.

    It is not fixed by individual blacks having money, no.

    I’m largely staying out of the Sanders thing. Of the major candidates I think he is the best one and I doubt Clinton (your only real alternative) will be better for blacks. However I support the right of blacks to do what they’re doing: they may not be willing to accept the lesser evil. I often haven’t been, I can hardly say that they don’t have the right to do so. (Not 100% clear that Sanders is the lesser evil, but eh, each to their own decision on that.)

  4. Ian Welsh permalink
    July 22, 2015

    Of course, V. Arnold. Blacks are killed disproportionately by police. Racism was involved. But others get brutalized pretty damn often as well. Take away racism and American cops would still be brutal thugs.

    I support Black Lives Matters in this, I simply note that the rot is FAR deeper than racism alone can explain.

  5. Kodachrome permalink
    July 22, 2015

    Ian, I think Sanders is clearly the best too. And would be the best for us as well. But his response to Black Lives Matter was just wrong. And I think essentially every single Black person who’s said anything about the issue has said so as well. He, and his non-Black supporters should just… stop, listen, defer to Black people on this.

    The Black-White wealth gap was fairly small during the Jim Crow era. Much, much smaller than it is today. It was hardly a safe period for us. Just the opposite in fact. Lynchings and race riots were often directly targeted at wealthy and successful Black people and areas. They were about knocking Black people down, making sure we stayed in our place (ie. under White people).

  6. V. Arnold permalink
    July 22, 2015

    A careful look at Sanders reveals a deeply jingoistic, pro-Israeli, anti-Russian warmonger; there are no, I repeat NO, qualified candidates at this time, period!
    America is lost to its roots; which have been carefully hidden for centuries…

  7. The Tragically Flip permalink
    July 22, 2015

    It’s the Stanford Prison experiment effect. The “guard” knew he had arbitrary powers over the “inmate” and so the slightest provocations (like asserting nominal rights) was enough for him to show his dominance. He only asked for the cigarette to be put out as a show of dominance in the first place.

    Racism doesn’t even have to take the form of the individual officer having an ill opinion of black people (though of course often it does), it can be as simple as knowing black people don’t “matter” and hurting one won’t land him in trouble. Race is This is the truth of the saying “power corrupts.”

  8. Ian Welsh permalink
    July 22, 2015

    Sorry, V. an honest mistake and corrected. Comment deleted.

  9. The Tragically Flip permalink
    July 22, 2015

    The G20 should have been an object lesson to affluent white people that we too can come under the batons of these thugs when they feel they have leeway to treat us like shit, which they did after those couple cop cars got burnt the leadership took the leash off.

    Everyone short of actual elites was fair game for 24-36 hours. Even normally exempt classes like non-famous journalists working for elite publications were included – photographers and journalists for major publications were arrested. The only ones exempted were recognizable on-air personalities like Steve Paiken (Ontario television personality for non-locals to Toronto). The people “kettled” for hours in a rainstorm there on Spadina were mostly well-to-do condo denizens.

    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? Remains such a vital and as yet not properly addressed question.

  10. V. Arnold permalink
    July 22, 2015

    Ian Welsh
    July 22, 2015
    Sorry, V. an honest mistake and corrected. Comment deleted.

    Accepted, cheers…

  11. V. Arnold permalink
    July 22, 2015

    “If blacks had the same amount of money that whites do, on average, I strongly suspect they would be much safer after a period in which they showed their clout.”

    And I disagree; if that is what you really think; then you do not understand racism; especially in the U.S.
    It runs so deep, it’s part of the white DNA.
    I’d suggest you really need to do more homework.
    I’ve lived it, experienced it everywhere; neighborhoods, work places, and the social. Obama is the living example; a foil to your opinion and lack of understanding.
    By your own words; you have no idea…

  12. Dagnarus permalink
    July 22, 2015

    To chime in. My understanding is that about 42% of people shot by police in America are white people. While this figure still shows that African americans are much more likely to be shot by police than white people, if I look at the chart shown here http://www.businessinsider.sg/why-do-us-police-kill-so-many-people-2014-8/, even if only the white people killed by police were shown on that chart I.E. the US killing were reduced to 42% of there original value, it still wouldn’t come close to invalidating the point that police in the US kill people at a far higher rate than in other developed countries. To be clear I’m not saying that racism isn’t a factor here, just that if racism was removed from the equation entirely then you would still have a problem with overzealous cops butchering people.

  13. July 22, 2015

    While this case doesn’t involve murder (or bodily injury) it does show how corrupt and appalling our system of justice is.
    ~

  14. realitychecker permalink
    July 22, 2015

    It really needs to be noted what happened at the outset of the full video. The cop had just finished giving a warning to another motorist who then drives away.

    Immediately after that, Bland drives past the cop from the opposite direction. Without having seen anything but an out-of-state plate and, perhaps, her black face, he makes an immediate U-turn and starts to chase her down at high speed. His intent to stop her for no reason is already clear at that point. She sees him coming up fast behind her, and moves to the right lane to make room for him to pass her. That is the “no-signal” move he then uses as his excuse for stopping her. I find this to be a key and infuriating fact that provides the proper context for all that followed.

    He apparently filled out another warning for her rather than a ticket, but she had no clue it was not going to be a ticket. So she had plenty of reason to be mad and to feel picked upon. And his query to her about why was she looking irritated, was clearly the same kind of passive-aggressive thing cops do in the hopes that they will get a bad answer that permits them to escalate. After the arrest, he then lies to his superiors about when he told her she was under arrest, saying it was later, after she was already pulled from her car, at a point where it would not have been an unlawful arrest for resisting/assault. All in all, another cop that has no business exerting power over the citizenry. I won’t type what I think such bully cops deserve to have happen to them.

    Having said that, I must also say, what the hell has to be wrong with a black person in that situation to be stupid enough to verbalize her anger against the cop? We know what bullies they are, and Bland especially knew after her involvement in Black Lives Matter. How can you know how vulnerable you are, and still unleash the torrent of insults and obscenities she did against the cop who had total power over her in that moment? She fell right into his trap. I have had the exact same experience, in New Jersey, of moving over (on a motorcycle) to let a speeding cop have the left lane. I am white, and a lawyer, but I would never have dared or been so stupid as to vent my angry feelings toward the cop. I politely took my ticket and then got (predictably) railroaded in traffic court. There, I expressed my resistance by walking out without paying my fine (after the cop mis-identified my witness as being me). So, now I am a permanent fugitive in New Jersey, but at least I did not risk my life out on the road with the cop.

    I truly wish black people would learn the lesson, and reduce their casualties. Sometimes, being right does not mean you are safe to express your anger. And it has been the case that all the unfortunate black people we have been reading about lately in these confrontations have failed to exercise a safe and prudent restraint. What is up with that? I would sincerely like to understand why that lack of restraint keeps getting exhibited in these situations. It’s tragic.

  15. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 22, 2015

    I hope RC’s comment was some sort of snark that was too subtle for me to catch, a parody of “blame the victim” arguments.

  16. S Brennan permalink
    July 22, 2015

    This post is spot on Ian, it’s about power, if there were no blacks in the world this abuse would still exists, indeed, the Caribbean slave trade of the sugar plantations circa 16-17th centuries started with Irish who died in great numbers. Very pale skin, with no clothes, in a tropical sun doomed the Irish field slaves, however the women survived and were paired with west African men, which is why you see a fair amount of Caribbean blacks with lighter skin.

    I disagree on Bernie’s being by far and away…just because people are turned off by Webbs rough edges and won’t vote for him, he’s been walking the talk for long time:

    ===================================================

    “Thus nonwhite groups received special consideration in a wide variety of areas including business startups, academic admissions, job promotions, and lucrative government contracts.”

    This sounds like a blanket opposition to all anti-discrimination efforts, but Webb’s view is more nuanced. Black Americans, he says, are a special case. “The injustices endured by black Americans at the hands of their own government have no parallel in our history, not only during the period of slavery but also in the Jim Crow era that followed.” To Webb, they’re owed remediation, and the United States has an “obligation to assist those still in need.” Otherwise, he writes, “government-directed diversity programs should end.”
    Advertisement

    Instead, Webb argues, the Democratic Party should devote itself to a program of economic uplift that lends a helping hand to all Americans and that, specifically, can improve the fortunes of poor and working-class whites.

    There’s a tinge of white identity politics to Webb’s argument, which might make it off-putting to the liberals, including blacks, who are critical to winning a Democratic presidential primary. Which is to say that even if Webb is serious about running for president he doesn’t have a chance. Still, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t grapple with his message, which—even with the rough parts—contains a lot of insight.

    Webb recognizes that for a generation of whites, neither the Democratic Party nor the government is on their side.

    On the reality of white disadvantage, Webb is right. While the poverty rate for white Americans is 9.6 percent—substantially below the rate for Latinos (23.5 percent) and black Americans (27.2 percent)—they account for nearly half of all of America’s poor, and 56 percent of the country’s poverty-level wage earners are white.

    But this isn’t part of the national conversation, which owes itself, in part, to geography. Unlike black and Latino poverty, which is tied heavily to the nation’s urban spaces, white poverty is more diffuse, though there are areas where it’s highly concentrated. Kentucky, West Virginia, and Arkansas are mostly white states with double-digit white poverty rates—18 percent, 16 percent, and 13 percent, respectively—and the ills that come with them: drug abuse, incarceration, and family dissolution. And overall, the number of whites who experience this kind of disadvantage has grown substantially in the last 20 years. “The number of non-Hispanic white people residing in high-poverty neighborhoods more than doubled between 2000 and 2007–2011, rising from 1.4 million to 2.9 million,” writes sociologist Paul Jargowsky in a 2014 report.

    Ironically, it’s this pervasiveness—the fact of its existence in almost every part of America—that makes white poverty nearly invisible to the national elites, who cluster in urban centers like New York City and Washington D.C., where minorities are a presence. It’s easy to forget the white poor when your closest examples of poverty are the housing projects of Anacostia and not the dilapidated mills of western North Carolina or the crumbling railroad towns of southern Georgia.

    Working-class whites face similar problems. While their disadvantage isn’t as deep—although many will experience spells of poverty or even slip in the ranks of the long-term poor—they have landed with the short end of the economic stick. This isn’t a new story. Between deindustrialization and public disinvestment—as well as “trickle-down” policies that pushed productivity gains into profits, not wages—working-class incomes have been destroyed. A generation of whites has been left behind—with work that isn’t steady if it pays well, and doesn’t pay much if it’s full time—and their children are sliding down the same path.

    What Webb recognizes is that from their perspective, neither the Democratic Party nor the government is on their side. Ignore whether you agree with Webb’s normative suggestions—that Democrats should give up anti-discrimination and affirmative action programs. The simple truth is that working-class whites see the Democratic Party as hostile to their interests as workers and citizens.”

    http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2015/01/jim_webb_wants_to_be_a_white_man_s_democrat_the_former_virginia_senator.html

  17. realitychecker permalink
    July 22, 2015

    No, IBW, not snark and not politically correct blindness, either.

    I hate cops and am on the side of black people, indeed all “regular” people.

    Can you not see that Bland made it easy for the cop to abuse her by going on a rant after he baited her by asking why she was “irritated”? Do you disagree that she put herself at risk by expressing her hostile feelings toward the cop who was, clearly, in the wrong? Do you think it is smart to express your verbal anger toward a cop who is already showing he is willing to break the rules?

    I’m talking about self-preservation here, not the First Amendment. Is it a good self-preservation strategy to give yourself the pleasure of mouthing off to a bully who can crush you? If not, then why do all the black people we’ve seen in these incidents fail to restrain themselves from verbally saying things that will anger their oppressors, who have ALL the power in that situation?

    It’s a tough issue, but worth talking about, IMO, since it may help save black lives. I am in favor of saving those lives. Aren’t you, IBW ?

  18. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 22, 2015

    Myyyyy, I seem to have hit a nerve. 😈

  19. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 22, 2015

    Yes, I would have behaved more prudently in that situation.

    However, I am a middle-aged “grafted devil”, so I am less likely to be put into such a situation in the first place.

    I have less reason to fear and loathe the pigs than an African-American. I can’t bring myself to blame the late Ms. Bland.

    100% of the moral onus falls on the pigs, not Ms. Bland.

    I hope the Feds take this case over.

  20. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 22, 2015

    I’m not quite sure what SN meant by “noncoms”, but the military reference reminds me that U. S. cops, as a general rule, increasingly display the psychology of an army of occupation amid hostile natives. More and more, all of us civilians of all skin tones are seen as potential Viet Cong, so to speak.

  21. Jeff Wegerson permalink
    July 22, 2015

    As a white I do not feel that I am in a position to publicly judge whether Bland should have known better. I will say that as a Chicagoan I was once caught off guard by Texas cops. The situation escalated much faster than I expected. As she had just arrived in state it is possible that her mind was running on subtle assumptions still grounded in a ever so slightly different place.

  22. peon permalink
    July 22, 2015

    She had a double whammy, black and female-two reasons for a white male to expect subservience.

  23. realitychecker permalink
    July 22, 2015

    I just hope nobody here is advising their black friends to overtly show and express any hostility or anger they feel to cops who engage them in the unequal, unfair, and even the illegal power posture that attends every one of these confrontations.

    Am I “blaming the victim”? That’s fucking ridiculous, and a sad reflection of the limited, rigid mentality of those who would automatically make such an accusation.

    I am trying to keep the victim from getting killed. What are you guys trying to do?

  24. Peter permalink
    July 22, 2015

    @ V Arnold

    The response to Bibi Sanders’ dismissal of Black Lives Matter demonstrators and the opportunity they offered him to attract a critical demographic for his supposed run against HRC is telling.

    First by publicly dismissing these important Black voters and their life and death concerns he seems to be only running for second place, living up to the description of Sheepdog for HRC described at BAR.

    Second and more disturbing is the response of his supporters who either dismiss this incident, that shows clearly the seedier side of Bibi S or even viciously attack the protesters even calling them paid HRC operatives. His White Liberal supporters know he represents their class and its Middle Class priorities which come first and other classes must wait patiently for the benefits of his utopian social democracy to trickle down from above.

  25. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 22, 2015

    From Counterpunch: Ajumu Baraka weighs in on the subject.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/07/22/the-martyrdom-of-sandra-bland-and-the-struggle-against-state-repression/

  26. bob mcmanus permalink
    July 22, 2015

    If being black and pulled over by a white cop has a decent probability of being fatal, well then, Newton and Cleaver proposed one possible justifiable response. I won’t recommend or advise Sandra Bland or anyone else to be a martyr, but a few or many dead cops on the road would at least mean that it might take more than one to make a traffic stop. This would save black lives, I think.

    I would really enjoy that video.

  27. V. Arnold permalink
    July 22, 2015

    This is well worth a look;
    http://www.democracynow.org/2015/7/22/between_the_world_and_me_ta?autostart=true

    Ta-Nehisi Coates Extended Interview on Being Black in America…

  28. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 22, 2015

    Joseph Cannon smells a distinct whiff of old fish in the official video story:

    http://cannonfire.blogspot.com/2015/07/the-sandra-bland-video.html

  29. different clue permalink
    July 22, 2015

    If a policeman/woman were to initiate some sort of interaction with me, I would stay as nice as possible through the whole thing. How would I know that this particular officer is not on the edge of a roid rage? I believe the ACLU advises anyone who reads its “in case of cop stop” literature to be nice and polite and stay that way. I don’t believe this is pre-emptive blaming-the-victim on the ACLU’s part. I believe this is meant as personal survivalist advice to anyone encountering the Darwinian Filter known as a police officer.

    In the longer run, people subject to police persecution or oppression will have to develop strategies and tactics of making the relevant police suffer so much and so long as to make indulging the “will to persecute” so costly as to stop the persecution. But I am not going to tell anyone ” let’s you and him fight. I’ll hold your coat.”

  30. Mary McCurnin permalink
    July 22, 2015

    Maybe Sandra Bland was sick of being picked on. Sick of trying her best to live in a world with racist dickheads. Maybe she had had it with the notion that she should be pragmatic in her approach to the cop. Can you imagine what it is like to endure this crap for a life time? She pushed back just a little and she is dead for it.

    Horrible.

  31. different clue permalink
    July 23, 2015

    testing testing . . .

  32. different clue permalink
    July 23, 2015

    Well, that printed, but my comment didn’t. Operator error? Possibly . . .

    What kind of actions, within the letter of the law, could be taken to deliver a memorable vengeance to the arresting officer and to all the people who had custody of Ms. Bland after she was delivered to the jail? A vengeance legal yet so terrible that all the LEOs who beheld it would tremble and hesitate to do the same thing to someone else?

    I heard on an NPR program this morning about how a white detainee was suicided in very similar circumstances in the very same jail about a year ago. Might such a “legal vengeance” movement grow to include more than just black people? How big a movement-load of people would have to begin thinking about this to come up with genuinely do-able things?

  33. CMike permalink
    July 23, 2015

    Kodachrome says:

    [H]is response to Black Lives Matter was just wrong. And I think essentially every single Black person who’s said anything about the issue has said so as well. He, and his non-Black supporters should just… stop, listen, defer to Black people on this.

    OK, you have the floor. With exactly what words and “I’m listening” poses should Sanders have deferred to the Black Lives Matter activists in that room?

  34. July 23, 2015

    @realitychecker – I hear you. “Blaming the victim” would be saying that her behavior gave the cop the right to do what he did, and you clearly are not saying that. She made it easy for him to do it. I would, perhaps, go a bit farther than you and suggest that a black person should be all “yes sir” and “no sir” while the cop is present, and then hide behind a tree with a rifle and shoot him in the ass. Don’t kill him, just make it impossible for him to sit on his mototcycle for a while.

  35. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 23, 2015

    Yes, Ms. Bland behaved imprudently, but I can’t blame her for snapping after a lifetime of deferring to fascist pigs.

    I wish the Feds would investigate this mess and turn that den of vipers inside out, but Oreobama has demonstrated many times that he lacks the intestinal fortitude for such things; he’s too busy kissing up to Big Money.

  36. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 23, 2015

    Correction: I forgot; Oreobama displays plenty of “courage” in pissing all over his base. It makes me glad I voted for the Green candidate both times Oreobama ran for Prez.

  37. S Brennan permalink
    July 23, 2015

    So to sum up the above thread…

    1] Bernie doesn’t care about black lives the way he should, implicitly saying Hillary does by skipping open forms [and most likely being behind the “protest” led by a Nigerian immigration advocate…who is probably a Hillary cutout…I’ll skip the part where I point out that Hillary is explicitly responsible for funding/arming and demanding Close Air Support for Al Qaeda-ISIS terrorists as they murdered 10-20,000 thousand blacks in Libya. Or the part that, in Libya, Hillary is to Obama what Dick Cheney was to Bush in Iraq.

    2] Sandra Bland kinda brought it upon her self by politely expressing her disappointment with a cops dangerous behavior creating a traffic hazard and stopping a black person for responding properly to it…and yes, a cop pulling an emergency u turn and accelerating up behind my car would convince me he was on an emergency call and that I should pull over so that he could pass.

    It’s been a real learning experience…because, before I read this thread, I thought this was about an innocent woman being murdered by a man with a badge…with the video tape [doctored as it is] to prove the facts in the case.

  38. Hairhead permalink
    July 23, 2015

    To every single poster who said she ought to have been more deferential: just look up on youtube the extravagant and disgusting number of videos of police officers assaulting and murdering black men, women, and children who were innocent, cooperative, and deferential. The fact is, if you are black in America and a cop wants to fuck you over and kill you there’s nothing you can do that will stop it happening.

    So you might as well stand up for yourself.

    After all, look how seventy years of politely deferring to whites at lunch counters worked to convince society to treat them equally. (/sarcasm)

    I am convinced the only thing that will stop cops from murdering blacks is injury and death to some of those officers. Public shaming hasn’t stopped them. Multi-million dollar lawsuits haven’t stopped them. Police board investigations, grand juries, bystander videos, dashcams, and body cams haven’t stopped them. At this point in America police can outright murder any black person, in any circumstance, recorded from multiple points of view without any consequence, and sometimes, as in the case of Dennis Wilson/Mike Brown, with a $500,000 payout from jocular American racists.

    Again: nothing will change until there are actual consequences visited upon the individual murdering thug police.

  39. Chris P permalink
    July 23, 2015

    THIS kind of behavior is emblematic here. Reducing IT will be problematic because it is not as easily identifiable as something physical like steroids, for example. It’s really about sociopaths taking out their frustrations on easy prey. Badges make some people considerably more dangerous. It works on many insidious smaller levels too. Some police look for trouble (in the wrong way).

  40. realitychecker permalink
    July 23, 2015

    Dear S Brennan,

    Your comment has convinced me that you really don’t know how to have a “learning experience.”

    I sure hope you don’t have any black friends who take your guidance to heart and try to kill every cop that comes near them, in self-defense, or show their anger at unfair/unlawful cop behavior as vociferously as possible, because that will just get them killed even faster. Got functioning brain, sir?

    Sheesh, team spirit sure can make people stupid, lefties as well as righties, apparently.

    Having said that, I also agree that more dead cops would improve the overall situation-people who live by force only understand physical pain. Sad to say.

  41. realitychecker permalink
    July 23, 2015

    S Brennan

    My response to you was also intended to cover the comment by Hairhead.

    It’s not about blaming Ms. Bland, it’s about understanding the basic police psychology attending these encounters. The cops are all about not letting their authority be challenged in any way. If they feel it is, they turn into animals. That has been well understood and written about for decades.

    What I would like to understand is why all these black victims can’t resist the urge to vent their verbal anger in these situations, simply as a matter of basic self-preservation. We hear all these parents saying they had “the talk” with the black children about staying deferential and just getting through it (the same way I get through it with my white lawyer’s ass), yet over and over we see that the people who get hurt fail to follow that guidance. What is up with that, and how can it be stopped? I want to see less black victims, and more live black folks. Is it worth mouthing off if that just guarantees that you will get jacked up? IOW– don’t bring your rights to a gunfight!!!!

    I would also say, I think it is a profoundly self-defeating thing to make this all about black people. All regular people are getting abused by the police these days, myself included, repeatedly. We divide and conquer ourselves when we fail to present a united front. Twelve percent of the population vs. 60-70% of the population fighting against this abuse–which would be more effective???????

  42. July 23, 2015

    I never signal when I pull over for a cop or ambulance. Neither does anyone else. (At least I don’t remember ever seeing dozens of blinking tail lights in front of me when a cop or ambulance comes by during rush hour.) You just get the hell over.

    That cop wanted her. He wanted to dominate someone.

    Also, I think the custom is something like this. If you don’t cooperate (and by cooperate I mean show complete deference and preferably fear), the cop is allowed to tase you or rough you up (while yelling “Stop resisting!– natch), and arrest you for assault. If you actually resist, the cop is allowed to hospitalize you (and there is risk of death). If you flee, the cop is allowed to shoot at you.

    Maybe not the custom everywhere, but in plenty of places.

  43. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 23, 2015

    One thing we need is for the honest cops–well, the otherwise honest cops–to quit protecting the sociopathic and/or corrupt cops.

    I wish I knew how to make that happen.

  44. different clue permalink
    July 23, 2015

    “To protect the honest cops” would require a civil society movement of millions of people devoted to effectively and successfully protecting such honest officers Honest officers know they will get the Serpico treatment if they display honesty. Without backup from a vast and powerful citizen movement dedicated to decontaminating and purging police forces based on intelligence provided by honest officers, there is nothing the honest officer can do.

    As to Hairhead’s comment above, the sentiment is understandable. But a word of caution is in order. I am sure Hairhead means well, but it is a rule of thumb that the first person to suggest “a few dead cops” is an undercover government agent provocateur of some kind. So repeated comments of that sort might bring such suspicion onto the commenter. Perhaps there are legal ways to destroy the officer-in-question’s life and psychological/emotional state without using illegally violent methods? Perhaps such ways could be invented and used by an organized movement of millions which would not be available to a few thousand unhappy people.

  45. Peter permalink
    July 23, 2015

    @ different clue

    If we had a civil society movement of millions of people we wouldn’t need occupying, unaccountable,militarist police forces, we could police ourselves with officers chosen and controlled by local people.

    Trying to reform a system that is designed to repress and control the lower classes that is based on the Slave Catcher model is futile, they work for and only respond to the needs of the Ruling Class.

  46. Lisa permalink
    July 23, 2015

    I’ve mentioned this before but the US is a high bullying/high violence culture. This is lethal for those lower down the ‘pecking order’, coloured, women, GLBTI, etc, etc.

    Though females do it too the culture of ‘toxic masculinity’ is almost by defintion about bullying. There is this ‘pecking order’, by gender, race and class. Those higher up see they have a right to bully those lower and will also attack anyone perceived of being ‘uppity’.

    If you are lower down the pecking order then you will more often use physical bullying of those below you to make yourself feel better (higher up ones still bully just use less direcly violent means).

    This is very telling: “Study Finds Men Who Harass Women Online Are, Quite Literally, Losers”
    http://www.buzzfeed.com/alexlee/not-all-men-just-losers#.kary0698w

    Now white cops, working class, not very bright, low in the US social and economic order will (of course) hammer those lower than them by violence, to maintain their relative status, if allowed. This is a major part of US ‘toxic masculinty’ culture, a quickness to use violence on those weaker and lower than them (ie physical bullying).

    Another part of this bullying/toxic culture is that though they all think they are so tough (and endlessly boast to each other about that) they are so quick to use greater numbers against someone who fights back (or is even thought to be a threat). In that, there is also a sub text of cowardness, which is an essential part of being a bully.

    I will bet a lot that after some violent encounter, they all boast to each other about it “that bitch was uppity so I smashed her around”, sort of thing and they all get socially suppported by their peers in that. I suspect that the levels of domestic violence for these males is very, very high indeed. Many of them will be on a ‘hair trigger’ alert for any perceived violation of their ‘authority’ and will switch to violence very quickly indeed (provided it is safe for them of course).

    By the way you can have a high violence/low bullying culture, but violence is between peers, those perceived as being weaker/lower are left alone. In this sort of culture beating up someone weaker than yourself is seen as being weak. In US bullying culture, doing the same is seen as beng strong.

    The real issue is that they are allowed, even encouraged to do so by their masters. It is not that difficult to reduce this sort of activity, but those higher up see this as a useful exercise in keeping the lower orders down. It also distracts those police (and those at a similar class/race/etc level) from questioning those higher up by giving them an outlet, a target that they can vent on. After all they get bullied too, albeit not so violently, by those higher than them, but after a hard time by their boss they can go and beat up/kill someone else with impunity and feel better.

    So it is all about power relationships and how these are dealt with by overall societal rules. The US has a high tolerance (an expectation?) of bullying plus a high acceptence of violence against those lower/weaker, along with encouragement from those higher in the social/economic order than those doing the actual violence.

    Changing it requires changing the power relationships. The police won’t change unless forced to do so and the elites either don’t care or encourage it. If (say) everytime a someone was murdered by the police a hundred thousand tough protesters showed up then things would change, because the elites would see this is a threat to them and then do something about it and would happily throw many of the police under a bus if it suited them.

  47. Hairhead permalink
    July 24, 2015

    to different clue above: I am not suggesting or approving that violence happen to cops. What I am saying is that, as NOTHING else has worked, the only thing that will change the situation is if violent, murdering cops suffer individual consequences. As Ian has noted many times before, predicting violent consequences of a situation does not mean one approves of it — it means that one can see it happening.

    And your suggestions that it will take the combined effort of millions of dedicated persons to make even a small change make the conclusion that the change will likely come through violence that much more probable.

    I don’t take any joy in predicting violence, and I don’t advocate it: yet as I pointed out, cops can outright murder on multiple video — and nothing happens. And nothing will happen — until something equally horrible is visited upon the perpetrators.

    Remember, it took the National Guard with tanks and machine guns just to integrate the schools in the South.

  48. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 24, 2015

    Henry Giroux in Counterpunch: “America’s New Brutalism”

    I would argue only with the title; I doubt that it is new.

  49. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 24, 2015

    Khest, I forgot to post the link.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/07/24/americas-new-brutalism-the-death-of-sandra-bland/

  50. Ian Welsh permalink
    July 24, 2015

    Lisa’s point about high violence/low bullying is one I’ll echo. Certainly I was brought up to believe that using violence against people weaker than me was contemptible. Younger kids, females, small animals, etc…

    You can have a patriarchal society where violence against women is severely frowned upon, because it says that the perpetrator is a coward.

    (Note that this is part of the justification for not torturing Nazis the British spy chief used “any man who strikes a prisoner is a coward.” (aka. Prisoners cannot fight back, ergo you a coward to use violence on them.))

  51. S Brennan permalink
    July 24, 2015

    This is what Sandra Bland was up against:

    “Waller County had among the highest numbers of lynchings in the state between 1877 and 1950…[in recent years] District Attorney Oliver Kitzman claimed the students at Prairie View A&M, [a majority black college] were ineligible to vote in Waller County, despite clear Supreme Court [ruling]…Kitzman threatened to prosecute any student who voted. Kitzman told the Los Angeles Times that any racial issues in the county could be solved “if we just sent them to Los Angeles”…In 2007, the chief of police in Hempstead, Glenn Smith, was accused of racism and police brutality during an arrest…[he was] suspended for two weeks…The following year, amid more allegations of police misconduct, Smith was fired. He promptly ran for county sheriff and won, and is now charged with investigating Bland’s death in the jail he oversees. Elton Mathis, who holds Kitzman’s old job [as prosecutor], has also been accused of pursuing racially disparate prosecutions.”

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/07/sandra-bland-waller-county-racism/398975/

  52. Peter permalink
    July 24, 2015

    Ian, Patriarchy is based on the domination of women with violence always threatened if not actual, statistics show violence against women is very actual and ‘ frowning upon’ violence by Patriarchs is a bad hypocritical joke when it comes from a country that uses this ideology to dominate, with violence, any other people it brands as lesser beings just as it does with women.

    Patriarchy and racism are the diseases that form the basis for Western Civilization and its constant need for conquest and domination of people and the natural world.

    It seems we have more bullies in positions of power now than ever before and frowning hasn’t reduced the junior bully population at all, it’s a training camp for future leaders and their enforcers.

  53. S Brennan permalink
    July 24, 2015

    I agree with Ian & Lisa on this, from my FBook post yesterday morning:

    So MSM is putting out the message that Sandra Bland brought it upon her self by politely expressing her disappointment with a cop’s dangerous behavior in creating a traffic emergency…and stopping a black person for responding properly to it.

    Call me old fashioned, but there was a time in America where, at least publicly, the Mainstream Media would not support a man beating the shit out of a woman for passively sitting in her car…badge or not. This is barbarity being sold as “law & order”.

    …and why yes, a cop pulling an emergency u turn and accelerating up behind my car at high speed would convince me he was on an emergency call…and that I should pull over so that he could pass. If the cop pulled that stunt on me, I would politely explain his public endangerment was unprofessional…I would not expect to be killed for not being meek enough to a cop engaging in dangerous behavior…this cop was looking to create a conflict and then to escalate [it’s clearly in the tape] it with somebody he felt he could be a bully to…that’s why Sandra died, she was stopped by a murderous bully…the badge is a call to duty, not a license to bully and kill.

    http://crooksandliars.com/2015/07/ex-cop-tells-cnn-sandra-bland-would-be

  54. Lisa permalink
    July 24, 2015

    S Brennan: “this cop was looking to create a conflict and then to escalate [it’s clearly in the tape] it with somebody he felt he could be a bully to”

    Absolutely correct. If it wasn’t her it would have been someone else, coloured of course, probably female. Note that he is was far too cowardly to stop a white guy in an expensive Merc…he knew what would happen if he did.

    But this is a steady degredation in US (and a heck of a lot of other places too) culture. Bullying is now seen as a perk for those higher up the tree, rather than shameful secret that they still did but hid. And it is right across the board in so many ways, relentless harrassment of employees, people on benefits having to face compulsory drug tests and all the rest. None of these things make the slightest policy or economic sense, but they are great fun for those who can do it to others.

    The rise and rise of sociopaths, who get a kick out of that. Add in a toxic masculinity culture and it is recipe for disaster.

    Take a simple cultural example, get the 1960s series Dangerman out on DVD. See how the hero works and how careful he is to make sure that innocent people are protected and not harmed by his mission. Watch the politeness towards others in normal dealings.

    Take a contemporary US series. See how brutal the ‘hero’ is towards the innocent in the way, they are just collateral damage and an obstruction to them. The bullying of ordinary people is so casual and so commonplace that most people don’t even notice it.

    Never make excuses for bullies like ..”they were bullied too”, or “they are mixed up” or whatever. People bully because it is fun for them, they enjoy it, that’s the terrible secret no one wants to acknowledge. That’s why they keep doing it unless they are stopped. Sure there might have been a case of a bully spontaneously stopping and developing a conscience ….somewhere, sometime….

    You take that recent example of the guy in the wheelchair, those cops are still high fiving each other over that, they enjoyed doing it. Excitement, andreline, male bonding over a broken body they all piled on and hurt. It’s zero risk fun. I’ve watched things like that happen in front of me., a fight between two people, someone goes down and then (and only then) everyone piles on…

    Here in Australia we had gangs of young guys in the 90s in Sydney delibertely going for a night out to find a ‘poof’ to beat up and even murder (and lots were murdered). It was a fun night out, premeditated violence and murder. Naturally the police (being very similar kinds of people) did nothing, until massive LGBTI lobbying happened that got the politicians to finally do something about it. If it hadn’t been for that it would still be happening today.

    And that is a lesson on how to deal with systemic US police violence. Everytime it happens there has to be massive demonstrations and lobbying and clever media usage. Until that happens nothing will change.

    Never forget that barbarism is just under the skin of nearly everybody (especially young males), held in place largely by the gossamer threads of social rules, which are very fragile.
    No society has ever had a problem of finding brutal prison camp guards or torturers when they wanted them.

  55. Lisa permalink
    July 24, 2015

    I wonder if her body was rape tested. That is not an uncommon scenario, rape her to teach her a lesson then kill her to cover it up if she says she is going to report him/them.

    “Diepraam said the autopsy showed that Bland had no defensive injuries on her hands that would typically indicate a struggle. He said the 30 lacerations or abrasions found on her wrists were consistent with self-inflicted injuries he’s seen before — though he noted that the marks don’t ne necessarily mean that’s what happened in this case.

    Marks around Bland’s neck, Diepraam said, also do not match those that are typically found on homicide victims.

    “I have not seen any evidence suggesting that this is a homicide,” he said, saying that the injuries instead would be consistent with a death by suicide. “

  56. S Brennan permalink
    July 25, 2015

    I’m used to a medical examiner reporting autopsy reports, but if this guy was urged* to run for a judgeship because the police department didn’t like the incumbents rulings…I guess everything is jake.

    “Diepraam said he had no initial plans to seek election in the Fort Bend County judgeship’s race until finally being persuaded by local law enforcement to seek election, filing for office just before the deadline.”

    http://www.yourhoustonnews.com/east_montgomery/news/special-prosecutor-diepraam-falls-short-in-bid-to-become-judge/article_d8d81147-2853-5dbd-a5f3-4e3bc697e2fc.html

  57. hgm permalink
    July 25, 2015

    Racism is part of America’s DNA…nonetheless the last decade of its foreign policy would have been flat impossible to pull off without an horrific reign of terror both at home and abroad.

    Far fewer people were speaking out when Washington was still in the middle of “‘gittin ‘er done”.

    Pinning the current repulsive state of affairs on racism alone smacks of revisionism.

  58. Peter permalink
    July 25, 2015

    @hgm

    I don’t think anyone is trying to be so reductionist as to pin everything evil about our Death Cult State on racism but it is one of the pillars that our hegemony is and was built upon. Conquest requires that the Other be dehumanized and racism is the West’s tool of choice for that goal.

    The BLM and other activists are confronting the increasing murderous attacks on their long suffering racial group which is a direct result of this systemic disease in Amerika especially in the enforcement arm of the state.

    Poor White Folks whining about their repression by the State is a bit pathetic, in this context, when they have to actually do something to even attract the attention of the Overseer while Black people are targeted from birth. Young Blacks especially males are targeted as future criminals just as Young Palestinians and other Muslim youth are targeted as future terrorists.

  59. hgm permalink
    July 25, 2015

    No argument there, it’s just that this seems less like some burgeoning new consciousness than the pressure being reduced now that the U.S. seemingly is more securely consolidated in the top position.

    I suspect that many who are howling with outrage now had been more than willing to turn a blind eye, back when the drive for expansion was in full throttle and the lid was being clamped down hard.

  60. hgm permalink
    July 25, 2015

    Further, the desire was to assimilate as well as conquer.

    That’s not possible without giving the authorities on the ground truly arbitrary power–limited power inevitably leaves cracks and hollows that diehard natives can take refuge it.

    Basically, they need to be given carte blanche to smash anyone that deviates in any fashion from the prescribed conception of “normal”. Culture is much too complicated to formally codify in any practical way, so they can’t be limited by rules if they want to accomplish that. So they need almost as much leeway in their dealings with the rabble as a robber knight or a medieval samurai.

    It’s the same operating principle as “signature strikes”. Assimilate, or perish.

  61. realitychecker permalink
    July 25, 2015

    @Peter

    So, the ‘pathetic poor white folks’ improperly abused by the police should just STFU, rather than seek to have a united front with blacks and all other regular people wronged by our domestic fascists? Do you really mean to present that as your position? (eyes rolling)

    And, I wonder, do you have a database of black infants beaten in their cribs, toddlers terrorized with tasers, etc., to support your statement about black victimization by police “from birth”? I doubt it.

    In a conversation that begs for precision and appreciation of subtleties, you (sadly) exhibit the subtlety of an elephant’s penis, Peter. (No pun or redundancy intended lol.)

  62. S Brennan permalink
    July 25, 2015

    Yeah, there’s racism, but it’s clear,he’s one of those men who gets his kicks from abusing women…I guess the prosecutor thinks men beating up women is okay.

    But when look at the prosecutor’s record of threatening violence to clergy…well, men who beat up women would be seen as a fellow traveler.

    http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Pastor-says-Waller-DA-threatened-him-5525581.php

  63. S Brennan permalink
    July 25, 2015

    Then there’s the Sheriff, elected after being arrested for racism.

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2015/07/16/sandra_bland_sheriff_fired_racism_allegations_sheriff_glenn_smith_accused.html

  64. S Brennan permalink
    July 25, 2015

    This is what Sandra Bland was up against:

    “Waller County had among the highest numbers of lynchings in the state between 1877 and 1950…[in recent years] District Attorney Oliver Kitzman claimed the students at Prairie View A&M, [a majority black college] were ineligible to vote in Waller County, despite clear Supreme Court [ruling]…Kitzman threatened to prosecute any student who voted. Kitzman told the Los Angeles Times that any racial issues in the county could be solved “if we just sent them to Los Angeles”…In 2007, the chief of police in Hempstead, Glenn Smith, was accused of racism and police brutality during an arrest…[he was] suspended for two weeks…The following year, amid more allegations of police misconduct, Smith was fired. He promptly ran for county sheriff and won, and is now charged with investigating Bland’s death in the jail he oversees. Elton Mathis, who holds Kitzman’s old job [as prosecutor], has also been accused of pursuing racially disparate prosecutions.”

  65. Lisa permalink
    July 25, 2015

    This is interesting. Now I have long been very skeptical about evolutionary psychology theory (EPT), because much tends to be US/North American based and ..amazingly…always seems to come up with results that confirm that what US people do is following EPT ‘correctly’, no matter how reprehensible.

    “This study examines adolescent bullying behaviors via the lens of EPT. Questionnaires were administered to 135 adolescents, ages 13 to 16, from one secondary school in metro Vancouver, British Columbia.
    Participants were categorized into one of four groups (bullies, victims, bully/victims, or bystanders) according to their involvement in bullying interactions as measured by the Olweus Bully/Victim Questionnaire.
    Four dependent variables were examined: depression, self-esteem, social status, and social anxiety.

    ***Results indicate that bullies had the most positive scores on mental health measures and held the highest social rank in the school environment, with significant differences limited to comparisons between bullies and bully/victims. ***”

    That result doesn not surprise me these days, though when and where I was growing up it would have completely untrue (the bullies in our school were scum).

    That was because there was another category many of us (including the best fighters) adhered to ‘heros’.

    Now this was Glasgow in the early 70s, and your (working class) school social status was tied to how good a fighter you were, but bullies were seen as scum and not ‘real’ fighters (and would always get their heads kicked in if they tried anything on a ‘real’ fighter so they stayed well clear).

    ‘Real’ fighters usually stopped bullies, so they existed in the dark. They also got all the girls too, who had no interest in bullies, but they liked the ‘heroes’.

    Bullies came from the lower end, being streamed in those days they were the C&D streams, the best fighters were from the A&B ones. In our school we had mass fights at one time, because an older C/D stream became habitual bullies, so we younger A/B ones took them on and beat them. End of bullying, because we saw ourselves as ‘heroes’, hard, tough but fair.

    Note that the teachers had nothing to do with this whatsoever, as usual some would say. We got very cynical very quickly, and saw that teachers would do nothing about bullying whatsoever, unless some favourite of theirs was picked on (usually a nice middle class kid).

    So this is where their intepretation turns to crap:
    “These results lend support to the hypothesis that youth bullying is derived from evolutionary development.”

    Nonesense, it just shows that there is social acceptance for bullies now that almost certainly once didn’t exist. It also shows that there are no ‘heroes’ that they consider (or now exist). There are plenty of cultures, even now, that see bullying as weak.

    Note the telling title, which tells you more about the mindset of the ‘researchers’ than it does about the research:
    “Survival of the Fittest and the Sexiest: Evolutionary Origins of Adolescent Bullying.”
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26160858

    Along the lines of: ‘the bullies get the sexiest girls. “, yabba, yabba….

  66. Peter permalink
    July 25, 2015

    @RC

    Nice rant RC, the incident that tarnished Bibi Sander’s gleaming Populist armor has certainly drawn out the Liberal reactionaries.

    The last time I checked my reality there were recent reports of a 12 year old Black child being gunned down by an Officer Friendly and before that a report on a flash-bang being lobbed into a Black baby’s crib and there have been numerous reports of Police violence against Black school children and probably many more that go unreported.

    It’s true that Poor White Trash are slapped around and abused by the Cops and occasionally they kill one or two, such as happened to a homeless man here in NM a while ago but this is a rare occurrence when compared to the almost methodical and growing abuse and murder of unarmed mostly young Black men and women.

    I would never tell liberal Dems to STFU but I might recommend they ‘listen’ which is probably just as futile seeing your and other’s reactions.

    Liberal Dems don’t unite with anyone they can’t manipulate, coopt or control so why waste resources and energy joining a group that will forget you as soon as you are no longer needed for their purposes.

    I’ve found that subtlety and nuance don’t work with people who use elephant penis analogies so the direct approach is my default method, besides they are often used by those who think themselves clever to hide and distract people from their agendas.

  67. Ivory Bill Woodpecker permalink
    July 25, 2015

    Scold vs. Scold! Pop the popcorn! 😈

  68. charlie permalink
    July 26, 2015

    http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2015/07/so-you-say-you-dont-want-revolution.html

    In the run-up to the Russian revolution, from 1901 through 1911, there were 17,000 such casualties. In 1907, the average toll was 18 people a day. According to police records, between February 1905 and May 1906, there were among those killed:

    8 governors
    5 vice-governors and other regional administrators
    21 chiefs of police, heads of municipalities and wardens
    8 high-ranking police officers
    4 generals
    7 military officers
    79 bailiffs
    125 inspectors
    346 police officers
    57 constables
    257 security personnel
    55 police service personnel
    18 state security agents
    85 government employees
    12 clergy
    52 rural government agents
    52 land-owners
    51 factory owners and managers
    54 bankers and businessmen

    Just sayin’. Hate to see it get to this, but it just might.

  69. Peter permalink
    July 26, 2015

    @Charlie

    We live in a Inverted Totalitarian State with an advanced Surveillance/Police Panopticon nothing resembling the backward near feudal Russia of 1905.

    Evidence of the IT state was clearly evident during the mildly radical Occupy Movement when a few people pushed the envelope slightly with some glass breaking and the reaction from the peanut gallery was immediate and severe with some people volunteering to assist the Pigs in rounding up these dangerous Radicals.

    Once the Liberal elites realized that Occupy couldn’t be coopted or used in other ways they stood back while the mostly Democrat controlled city Police State forces were called on to violently crush and remove the rabble who interfered with business as usual.

    If we reach the point where there is mass unemployment and poverty there may be violent resistance and action but most of the dying will among those who resist the Beast. There may be other ways to undermine and bring down Industrial Civilization but they will need to be tailored to our 21st century reality.

  70. Winston Smith permalink
    July 26, 2015

    Why not mention the cop is hispanic? Does that not change the racial math? Looks like Trump was right …

  71. charlie permalink
    July 26, 2015

    @ Peter

    I’m aware of all that, however, when the lights go out and the supply chain collapses, all bets are off, including IT surveillence.

  72. anonymous coward permalink
    July 27, 2015

    testing . . .

  73. cfbh permalink
    July 29, 2015

    I’m largely staying out of the Sanders thing. Of the major candidates I think he is the best one and I doubt Clinton (your only real alternative) will be better for blacks. However I support the right of blacks to do what they’re doing: they may not be willing to accept the lesser evil. I often haven’t been, I can hardly say that they don’t have the right to do so. (Not 100% clear that Sanders is the lesser evil, but eh, each to their own decision on that.)

    Umm.

    The above reads distressingly like Mandos defending Syriza.

  74. Lisa permalink
    July 29, 2015

    As I said before Number #1 mistake of ‘left/progressive/etc’ activists in the US, wasting all their energy and time on getting some Presidential candidates up, who inevitably betray them.

    They have to set themselves up to deal with whoever gets elected, with all the mechanisms for grass roots organisations, protests, lobbying, media managaement, etc, etc.

    The fact is no candidate will be better for blacks. The momentum for a militarised police that is systemically racist and bullying, that confiscates vast amounts of money…and all the miserable rest, is massive.

    This outcome is supported by the vast majority of the poltical/economic/military/ect elites. It is not accidental. To change it requires countering that.

    Far better to ignore the Presidency completely and concentrate on State legislators, Senators, etc, etc.

  75. Lisa permalink
    July 29, 2015

    Back to the general concept of bullying. Here is an example of a ‘Christian’ organisation defending bullying as a meothod of social control. This sort of behaviour is not uncommon, either overtly or covertly. A heck of a lot of poeple in the US really think (progressives too) deep in their hearts that these sort of police actions are a ‘good thing’.

    ACL says school anti-bullying program ‘encouraging cross dressing’
    http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/acl-says-school-antibullying-program-encouraging-cross-dressing-20150728-gimhz4.html#ixzz3hHPRpOjb

    “The Australian Christian Lobby is demanding the Queensland Government cease supporting a school based anti-bullying program for gay, intersex and gender diverse children, accusing it of promoting “radical sexual experimentation”, by encouraging the acceptance of gender and sexual diverse children.”

    My comments on this:
    ‘…encouraging the acceptance…” means stopping bullying.

    The ACL wants bullying to drive GLBTI kids underground.

    I say that because they say: “teach the child to block the bully …help them deal with their distress and powerlessness, teach them how to block bullies and rebuild their social survival skills in order that they are not bullied again”.

    That statement is just a clever way of ‘blaming the victim’, “oh you are being bullied, it s your fault because you haven’t learned to ‘block’ them”.
    And bullies often run in packs. When you get systematic bullying you have to systematic counter measures.

    Implications Elsewhere
    I notice a severe tactical mistake being made over the whole Blacklivesmatter thing. They are not using shaming of the police as a powerful emotional motivator.

    Remember these people all think they are big ‘manly’ men, ‘protecting the community’ and ‘under threat’ (as if). In the Sandra case not enough was has been done to shame the policeman in abusing a woman. Similarly killing unarmed black males and kids.

    More should be done to highlight how weak they are in acting the way they have. I was struck recently reading (claimed) US policemean (and they were all men) commenting on the case.

    The majority thought he was correct and she was wrong. Any sign of rebellion or unhappiness of their actions is read by them as disrespecting them and (toxic masculinity strikes again) then they are entitled to slap them down to restore their position.

    This is a classic toxic masculinty (and bully) rationalisation. You read what MRAs say about feminsts (in particular) and women in general and you see the exact same thing.

    Attacking them in the wrong way simply reinforces their point of view and you can see that in their own comments. It also unites them together, and one thing you have to do is split the police apart into seeing themselves as separate ‘good guys’ and ‘bad guys’.

    One social counter is shaming, by pointing out how weak they are in their actions. Now these men hate being thought of as weak, their internal and social standing are related to how tough they think they are. Point out their actions are cowardly and it creates an internal contradiction.

    Such as “you shot an unarmed man, why are you such a coward and were so scared”. “You did what to a woman and you call yourself a man”. “Why are our police so scared all the time of women and kids so that they attack and kill them”. “Why have we allowed such cowards into the police force, can’t we get some real men in there” …and all the rest. Repeated all the time to lock the media in.

    I’d love to see a headline in the US, “another cowardly policeman so scared of a harmless child he shoots at them”.

    But watching the confused (as usual) activists over this you see nothing of trying to set this narritive and get it up as a meme in the media. As well as tight focus on those in the power structure that can make an immediate difference (local Govt basically).

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