FREEDOM OR ANARCHY,Campaign of Conscience.

“To be GOVERNED is to be watched, inspected, spied upon, directed, law-driven, numbered, regulated, enrolled, indoctrinated, preached at, controlled, checked, estimated, valued, censured, commanded, by creatures who have neither the right nor the wisdom nor the virtue to do so. To be GOVERNED is to be at every operation, at every transaction noted, registered, counted, taxed, stamped, measured, numbered, assessed, licensed, authorized, admonished, prevented, forbidden, reformed, corrected, punished. It is, under pretext of public utility, and in the name of the general interest, to be place under contribution, drilled, fleeced, exploited, monopolized, extorted from, squeezed, hoaxed, robbed; then, at the slightest resistance, the first word of complaint, to be repressed, fined, vilified, harassed, hunted down, abused, clubbed, disarmed, bound, choked, imprisoned, judged, condemned, shot, deported, sacrificed, sold, betrayed; and to crown all, mocked, ridiculed, derided, outraged, dishonored. That is government; that is its justice; that is its morality."



Sunday, July 24, 2016

Keeping the poor impoverished

Callous eco-imperialists use lies, scare stories to deny poor countries better living standards

Keeping the poor impoverished

We are just now entering the age of industrialization, newly elected President Rodrigo Duterte said recently, explaining why the Philippines will not ratify the Paris climate accords. “Now that we’re developing, you will impose a limit? That’s absurd. It’s being imposed upon us by the industrialized countries. They think they can dictate our destiny.”

More developing nations are taking the same stance—and rightly so. They increasingly understand that fossil fuels are needed to modernize, industrialize, electrify, and decrease poverty, malnutrition and disease. Many supported the 2015 Paris climate treaty for three reasons.

They are not required to reduce their oil, natural gas and coal use, economic development and greenhouse gas emissions, because doing so would prevent them from improving their people’s living standards.

They want the free technology transfers and trillions of dollars in climate “adaptation, mitigation and reparation” funds that now-wealthy nations promised to pay for alleged climate transgressions. But they now know those promises won’t be kept—especially by countries that absurdly insist on slashing their energy use, economic growth and job creation, while developing countries surge ahead.

Climate has always changed. It is far better to have energy, technology, modern housing and wealth to adapt to, survive, recover from and even thrive amid inevitable warming, cooling and weather events, than to forego these abilities (on the absurd assumption that humans can control climate and weather)—and be forced to confront nature’s onslaughts the way previous generations had to.

The November 7-18 Marrakech,Morocco UN climate conference (COP-22) thus promises to be a lot of hot air, just like its predecessors. Officially, its goal is to accelerate GHG emission reductions, “brainstorm” with government and business leaders to achieve “new levels of cooperation and technology sharing” (and subsidies), and embrace “urgent action” to help African and small island nations survive the supposed ravages of manmade droughts and rising seas.

The true purposes are to pressure industrialized nations to end most fossil fuel use by 2050; intentionally replace free enterprise capitalism with a “more equitable” system; “more fairly” redistribute the world’s wealth and natural resources; and ensure that poor countries develop “sustainably” and not “too much”—all under the direction and control of UN agencies and environmentalist pressure groups.

We might ask: Replace capitalism with what exactly? Dictatorial UN socialism?

We might ask: Replace capitalism with what exactly? Dictatorial UN socialism? Redistribute what wealth exactly? After we’ve hobbled developed countries’ energy use, job creation and wealth creation, what will be left? As poor countries get rich, do you UN bureaucrats intend to take and redistribute their wealth to “less fortunate” nations that still fail to use fossil fuels or get rid of their kleptocratic leaders?

Africans are not endangered by manmade climate change. They are threatened by the same droughts and storms they have confronted for millennia, and by the same corrupt leaders who line their own pockets with climate and foreign aid cash, while doing nothing for their people and nothing to modernize their countries. Africa certainly does not need yet more callous outsider corruption dictating its future.

Pacific islanders likewise face no greater perils from seas rising at seven inches per century, than they have from seas that rose 400 feet since the last Ice Age glaciers melted, and their coral islands kept pace with those ocean levels—unless they too fail to use fossil fuel (and nuclear) power to modernize.

The Morocco-Paris-Bali-Rio manmade climate chaos mantra may protect people and planet from climate hobgoblins conjured up by garbage in-garbage out computer models. But it will perpetuate energy and economic poverty, imposed on powerless populations by eco-imperialist US, EU and UN functionaries.

Virtually every other environmentalist dogma has similar effects.

Sustainability precepts demand that we somehow predict future technologies—and ensure that today’s resource needs “will not compromise” the completely unpredictable energy and raw material needs that those unpredictable technologies will introduce. They require that we safeguard the assumed needs of future generations, even when it means ignoring or compromising the needs of current generations—including the needs, aspirations, health and welfare of the world’s poorest people.

Resource depletion claims fail to account for hydraulic fracturing and other new technologies that increase supplies, reduce their costs—or decrease the need for previously essential commodities, as fiber optic cables reduced the need for copper. The Stone age didn’t end because we ran out of stones. If we run out of something, it’s generally because governments prevented us from developing the resource.

Precautionary principles say we must focus on the risks of using chemicals, fossil fuels and other technologies—but never on the risks of not using them. We are required to emphasize minor, alleged, manageable, exaggerated or fabricated risks that a technology might cause, but ignore the risks it would reduce or prevent.

Because of illusory risks from biotechnology, we are to banish GMO Golden Rice and bananas that are rich in beta-carotene (which humans can convert into Vitamin A), and continue letting millions of children go blind or die. We are to accept millions more deaths from malaria, Zika, dengue, yellow fever and other diseases, because of imagined dangers of using DDT and insecticides. Must we also accept millions of cancer deaths, because of risks associated with radiation and chemo therapies?,_africans_die

Over the past three decades, fossil fuels helped 1.3 billion more people get electricity and escape deadly energy and economic poverty—over 830 million because of coal. China connected 99% of its population to the grid, also mostly with coal, enabling its average citizens to be ten times richer and live 32 years longer than five decades previously.

But another 1.2 billion people (the US, Canadian, Mexican and European populations combined) still do not have electricity. Another 2 billion have electrical power only sporadically and unpredictably and must still cook and heat with wood, charcoal and animal dung. Hundreds of millions get horribly sick and five million die every year from lung and intestinal diseases, due to breathing smoke from open fires and not having refrigeration, clean water and safe food. Because of climate “risks,” we are to let this continue.

Or as former Earth Island Institute editor Gar Smith so charmingly put it: “African villagers used to spend their days and evenings sewing clothing for their neighbors on foot-peddle-powered sewing machines.” Once they get electricity, they spend too much time watching television and listening to the radio. “If there is going to be electricity, I would like it to be decentralized, small and solar-powered.”

Of course, as a young black California mother reminded me a few years ago, eco-imperialism is not just a developing country issue. It is a global problem. “Because of their paranoid fear of sprawl,” LaTonya told me, “elitist eco-imperialists employ endless regulations and restrictions that prevent upwardly-mobile people of color from improving their lot in life. Only we, the wealthy and privileged, they seem to insist, can live in nice homes and safe neighborhoods, have good jobs and enjoy modern lifestyles.”

These ideologies and policies are absurd, callous, immoral, eco-imperialistic and genocidal. They inflict unconscionable crimes against humanity on the poorest among us. They can no longer be tolerated.

Rich nations used fossil fuels to advance science, create wondrous technologies beyond previous generations’ wildest imaginings, eradicate killer diseases, increase life expectancy from 46 in 1900 to 78 today, and give even poor families better living standards than kings and queens enjoyed a century ago.

Instead of holding poor countries and billions of less fortunate people back for still more decades, we are ethically bound to do everything we can to encourage and assist them to throw off their shackles, and join the world’s wealthy, healthy, technologically advanced nations.

Paul Driessen

Who and What Is Barack Obama?

Who and What Is Barack Obama?

I have been wondering, now that Barack Obama only has another six months before he has to leave the key under the White House mat, what his presidential library will be like.

With nothing to boast about in terms of foreign or domestic policy, with former allies not trusting us and current enemies not fearing us, with an economy that is on life support and a health care system that nobody envies, what could he possibly have on display? Heck, even at this late date, he refuses to divulge anything about his shadowy past, including school records, travel visas and even his questionable sex life.

If he possessed even a glimmer of wisdom, instead of a library, he would create a theme park, built along the lines of Disney’s Fantasyland with fun rides and perhaps a House of Horrors with life-like replicas of Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Eric Holder, Loretta Lynch, Valerie Jarrett, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and Al Sharpton.

Barack Obama claims we may never know the motives of Micah Johnson, the Dallas assassin who killed five police officers, even though Johnson told the Dallas Police Chief that he was out to kill white people, especially white cops. But, then, Obama is the same odd creature who decided long ago that Islamic terrorism has nothing to do with Islam even though those committing the carnage invariably shout “Allah Akbar!” while shedding innocent blood. Obama prefers to attribute it to workplace violence or to some mysterious urge beyond human ken.

Apologists for Obama are forever claiming that any attack on his policies or character are the result of bigotry, but they are never required to explain why that bigotry is never extended to include people like Clarence Thomas, Tim Scott, Herman Cain, Condoleezza Rice, Tom Sowell, Walter Williams or Jason Riley. My guess is that liberals would dismiss these people of accomplishment as a bunch of Uncle Toms and Aunt Jemimas, which would merely highlight their own bigotry.

The liberals also fail to explain how it is that Obama was twice elected to the highest office in the land in a nation where blacks only represent 12% of the population. I, of course, attribute it to the general feeblemindedness of the electorate, but I would love to hear their explanation.

I wonder if even Republicans realize how often they feel obliged to praise Obama’s oratorical gifts. Having had to listen to him far too many times over the past eight years, I’d say the man could put hummingbirds to sleep. So why the disconnect between me and all those others? I believe it’s the result of diminished expectations. So little is asked of black people that even in 2008, Joe Biden felt called upon to reveal that Obama smelled good. It was Joe’s way of letting us know that the presidential candidate apparently showered regularly or at least had the decency to use a name-brand deodorant.

When it comes to his speechifying, Obama gets brownie points simply because you can understand him when he speaks, which isn’t often the case when it comes to such Congressional Black Caucus luminaries as Elijah Cummings and John Lewis.

This double standard was on full display in the wake of the Dallas memorial for the five murdered police officers. Everyone on Fox News, or so it seemed, felt obliged to praise Obama up until the moment he veered away from lauding cops back into his comfort zone by pretending that guns, not Micah Johnson, had been responsible for the five dead bodies.

Anyone who has been paying attention realizes that Obama hates and distrusts cops, and that he was only saying what decent people actually believe about them — that they bravely lay their lives on the line to protect all of us for very little money and even less gratitude — so that he could segue into his canned harangue about guns.

As my wife Yvonne pointed out, it is the exact same approach that one of Obama’s Chicago mentors, Louis Farrakhan, head of the Nation of Islam, has employed for decades. He starts out sounding reasonable, suggesting ways that urban blacks might improve their lot before inevitably getting back on point and blaming all the ills of black Americans on the blue-eyed devils!

It only recently came to light that in 2015, Obama’s State Department, through the auspices of a group calling itself One Voice, spent 350,000 of our tax dollars trying to defeat Bibi Netanyahu in his attempt to retain the Prime Ministry. Fortunately, as is usually the case when Obama spends our money — be it to build renewable energy plants, track weapons into Mexico or prevent illegal aliens from facing deportation — his efforts failed.

I wonder what it is about liberals that not only encourages their leaders to lie to them, but why it is that no matter how blatant the lies, it never seems to bother the true believers. When Bernie Sanders said that by simply raising taxes on the wealthy, it would cover the $18 trillion his policies would have cost, how is it that not one of his fans bothered doing the math? And how is it that when Hillary Clinton spent a year lying about her private server and FBI Director Comey then testified she had lied every single time she’d opened her yap, she didn’t take a nose dive in the polls?

Furthermore, when Barack Obama, at the Dallas memorial, said it was easier for a black kid to get his hands on a Glock than a computer or even a book, why wasn’t he booed off the stage?

Not only is what he said a lie, but if it were true, what would it say about the way black kids are raised in America that they would very much prefer getting their hands on a Glock?

In the wake of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s announcing that a Donald Trump presidency would mean an end to western civilization, which is a clear violation of judicial ethics, we learned that such ethics don’t apply to Supreme Court justices. That’s according to Supreme Court justices. If so, it sounds like it would be a perfect fit for Bill Clinton in his wife’s administration.

Mrs. Ginsburg went on to say that the mere possibility that Trump might be elected served as a reminder that her late husband used to say on similar occasions — such as when Ronald Reagan was on the verge of being elected, no doubt — that it might be time to move to New Zealand. Well, just say the word, Mrs. G, and I’ll gladly drive you to the airport.

Finally, I won’t be at the GOP convention, but just in case one of you has Donald Trump’s ear, might I suggest that he not limit the spotlight to himself, his wife and the Pences? If it were me, after checking on their availability, I would ask to be joined on stage by Newt Gingrich, my Secretary of State; Dr. Ben Carson, my Surgeon General; Ted Cruz, my nominee for the Supreme Court; Carly Fiorina, my Secretary of the Treasury; Gen. Mike Flynn, my Secretary of Defense; and, last but not least, Chris Christie, my official food taster.

Why We Dream About A World Without Police

Why We Dream About A World Without Police

Above Photo: From
The last few years have been rough. President Obama’s last term in the White House has given many of us some of the most polarizing times we have ever experienced. It goes without saying that many have felt hopeless after being promised a change. Political disillusionment has clouded the air in a country struggling to find its true identity. In the midst of all this, unrelenting police violence has been in the spotlight driven by organized resistance to police brutality and renewed media interest. Police violence hasn’t necessarily gotten worsebut it’s being talked about more. This national conversation is absolutely necessary and should not let up. It’s important to utilize the tools we have – like our words – to rebel. Using words as resistance, Truthout recently published their first anthology, Who Do You Serve, Who Do You Protect? edited by Maya Schenwar, Joe Macare and Alana Yu-lan.
As the United States prepares to cast votes in the presidential election, people are reflecting. It’s no surprise to hear representatives of the political establishment making promises about which of society’s ailments they have a cure for. Each candidate appeals to the desires of their base. Politicians are expected to at least pretend that they care about bettering the lives of people in this nation. One of the issues that candidates have not been able to avoid is police violence. Trump has said he believes the police in this country are “amazing people” and Black Lives Matter is “trouble” while Clinton has attempted to ally herself with “Black Lives Matter” and sought to distance herself from an anti-Black past that included supporting her husband’s 1994 Crime BillBoth Trump’s intentional ignorance and Clinton’s performance of understanding illuminate the dire nature of people on the ground finding our own solutions.
The never-ending cycle of extra-judicial killing by police recently took the life of Alton Sterling, and immediately, we saw the standard reactions of grief, disgrace, and faith in an ineffective justice system. But voices speaking out against demands to “let the system work” and “let the police do their job” are increasing. Many of us want more from our society. The work to amplify and make these voices heard is exhausting, but necessary. Our lives depend on collecting our thoughts and ideas to build and strengthen movements for a more just and humane world without police violence.
Who Do You Serve,Who Do You Protect questions the necessity of the police from several different angles. While some might talk about possibly reforming the police, many of the contributors to this anthology question the police down to their very existence. Contributors from different perspectives center the importance of a movement against state violence that appropriately challenges white supremacy. That message is central to much of the thinking in the book’s essays, and it’s something I often think about myself.
My piece, ‘Killing Africa,’ discusses the pressing need for an international Black movement. I went about this by describing the killing of Charly “Africa” Leundeu Keunang by the LAPD.
I was devastated by the online circulation of Africa’s death, and I wanted to write something meaningful. Africa’s killing embodies the need for a global Black movement. His nickname, Africa, immediately brought to mind the African diaspora. That he was a Cameroonian immigrant with a stolen identity during an ever-growing refugee crisis stuck in my mind. And, as someone who was homeless, his life made me think about the metaphoric homelessness of the diaspora and the displacement taking place on the African continent.
Who Do You Serve,Who Do You Protect questions the necessity of the police from several different angles. While some might talk about possibly reforming the police, many of the contributors to this anthology question the police down to their very existence. Contributors from different perspectives center the importance of a movement against state violence that appropriately challenges white supremacy. That message is central to much of the thinking in the book’s essays, and it’s something I often think about myself.
My piece, ‘Killing Africa,’ discusses the pressing need for an international Black movement. I went about this by describing the killing of Charly “Africa” Leundeu Keunang by the LAPD.
I was devastated by the online circulation of Africa’s death, and I wanted to write something meaningful. Africa’s killing embodies the need for a global Black movement. His nickname, Africa, immediately brought to mind the African diaspora. That he was a Cameroonian immigrant with a stolen identity during an ever-growing refugee crisis stuck in my mind. And, as someone who was homeless, his life made me think about the metaphoric homelessness of the diaspora and the displacement taking place on the African continent.
When a close friend mentioned that her mother knew someone who knew Africa, I jumped at the chance to interview this person about Africa’s life. This man from Los Angeles detailed everything I wanted to know about Africa, whom he called by another nickname “Both.” He also told me his own story. This man’s testimony eerily brought Africa back to life in the wake of his death.
Many of the essays in this anthology include words coated with frustration and agony, but the words also convey hope by pointing to solutions. Some authors offer news ways to address or notaddress the police while others provide analyses of the role of the police. And yet others, like Candice Bernd’s “Community Groups Work to Provide Emergency Medical Alternatives Separate From Police”and Kelly Hayes’s “Our History and Our Dreams: Building Black and Native Solidarity” discuss what it would take to bring about substantial changes in community relations with this violent entity.
The introduction to the book by the editors explains that “To Protect And Serve” won the LAPD’s motto contest in 1955 and would go on to be the slogan of departments across the country. There is an obvious lack of serving and protecting Black communities by the police, and now, some 60 years and countless accounts of horror, violence and oppression later, there is much to be said about what a myth this slogan is.
I, like other authors in this book, take the position that the existence of the police force in this country is unnecessary. As radical as that idea may be to some, it’s one that needs to be taken seriously because Black people in the nation are being killed by police and vigilante violence with a terrible regularity, and it’s been happening for generations. This anthology urges readers to think, dream, and work toward a world without police.

Community Policing Part Of The Problem Of Abusive Policing

Community Policing Part Of The Problem Of Abusive Policing


Lack of accountability to the community is the problem, community control of policing is the solution

On June 8, 2016, three members of a We Charge Genocide working group, Real Community Accountability for People’s Safety (RCAPS) met with the Department of Justice. As part of their investigation into police use of deadly force in Chicago, the DOJ wanted to discuss The Counter-CAPS ReportThe Community Engagement Arm of the Police State. Community policing is currently an important plank in proposals for criminal justice reform. Through our independent, collaborative and grassroots research, we found that community policing mobilizes a self-selecting group to work with police and insulate them from scrutiny. It’s a way to generate some support for and increase the legitimacy of the police, not a serious solution to problems with state violence.
We wrote the Counter-CAPS report to challenge the emerging common sense on police reform. In the past two years, the Obama administration has advocated community policing as a key part of the solution to the “Post-Ferguson” crisis of police legitimacy. When Obama traveled to Chicago to address the annual meeting of International Association of Chiefs of Police, he advocated community policing. Anticipating as much, a group of radical black organizations—the Workers Center for Racial Justice, the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, and BYP 100, among others—organized “I Shocked the Sheriff,” a people’s congress and series of direct actions, to counter the ICAP meeting. A few days later, RCAPS released The Counter-CAPS Report as a complement to these actions and expression of the movement’s rejection of false solutions like community policing.
Our discussion with the DOJ was a continuation of this confrontation. We met with a DOJ lawyer and Scott Thomson, Chief of Camden County Police Department. Thomson is credited with using community policing to drive down the outsized crime rates of Camden, NJ, which, in 2012, held the infamous designation as the most violent and impoverished city in the United States. In May 2015, President Obama used Camden and its community policing programs as a backdrop to announce the findings of the post-Ferguson Commission on 21st Century Policing. Thomson has since become the president of the Police Executive Research Foundation, an influential reform-minded police association.
Of course, the reforms proposed by the Commission on 21st Century Policing and championed by people like Obama and Thomson are perfectly compatible with the aggressive policing that’s ostensibly being curtailed. Camden’s celebrated community policing operations, for example, exist alongside (and feed into) ubiquitous surveillance and intelligence gathering that enable police raids within criminalized and disinvested communities. Chicago’s community policing program—the oldest and largest of its kind in the nation—did nothing to preventstop-and-frisk, off-the-books detention and interrogation, other abuses that have led to $521 million in settlements over the last decade; and a series of scandals that have tarnished (the already minimal) credibility of Chicago Police Department and existing oversight mechanisms.
Our Counter-CAPS Reports shows community policing can coexist with these aggressive police operations because it does not create meaningful public accountability over the police. Instead of creating some kind meaningful involvement of “the community” in the provisioning of “security,” community policing is a liberal euphemism that hides a nefarious purpose–the political work of the police to organize the population and produce order, not just enforce it.”
The unacknowledged politics of community politicking were quickly laid bare to us. During the summer of 2015, RCAPS members began observing regular meetings between police and community members. While these meetings are meant to involve the public in collaborative problem solving with the police, we found them to be places where police organize micro-local political power. At community policing meetings, officers set the agenda and determine the appropriate response. Working in concert with a volunteer beat facilitator (a quasi-official position often connected to aldermen), officers organize residents into block groups and phone trees to report “suspicious” behavior. They encourage residents to call the police for nearly any perceived problem they experience, including minor issues such as profanity–providing cover for aggressive policing of quality of life issues. They direct the residents to focus on “problem properties” and build the case for investigation or eviction through their consistent monitoring and reporting.
These programs reduce social problems—poverty, inequality, segregation, homelessness—and transform them into technical “quality of life” problems that can be redressed by police action. In mobilizing residents as intelligence collectors for the police and political advocates for a punitive criminal justice (, community policing enlists us in the work of our domination. In exchange for a meaningless “seat at the table” in the police precinct, we can become junior partners in the operations of our local police state.
In other words, community policing is being offered at this moment precisely because it offers the promise of blunting grievances of radical movements and co-opting some of their leaders. Within this context, radicals are repressed. Potentially rebellious groups—such as the ever-increasing surplus populations warehoused in prisons—are incapacitated. Moderates are accommodated. The loyal opposition—such as the liberal NGOs that routinely undercut the work of autonomous grassroots—are politically incorporated as junior partners of the political elite. The iron first and the velvet glove operate hand-in-hand to pacify restive populations and mollify rebellion.
With this research and analysis informing our comments, the members of RCAPS hesitated to offer Thomson and the DOJ lawyer the pat suggestions for “reform” that they desired. We do not want “better” policing. We want to transform the institutions that mediate disputes, restore victims, and rehabilitate and reintegrate people who cause harm. Instead, we asked them “act with courage” and recognize that community policing is part of the problem, not the part of the solution.
This refusal to offer suggested reforms is not an attempt to avoid the difficult work wielding political power. Instead, it reflects a radical analysis that sees policing as institution beyond reform. With this mind, our suggestions—a rejection of community of policing and reduction of police budget—are our non-reformist reforms that seek to transform the balance of power in Chicago to the benefit of the people.
At the end of the meeting, we left the DOJ lawyer and Thomson with the annotated bibliography appended to the end of this write up. The bibliography extends and elaborates the arguments we made to the DOJ, adding further weight and context to the findings of the RCAPS report. The bibliography starts with a series of critical perspective on community policing. These studies show the historical and practical affinities between community policing and counterinsurgency, dispelling the commonly held notion that community policing is a demilitarizing reform. Annie Laure Paradise’s dissertation takes this critique a step further, contrasting state security initiatives with autonomous grassroots projects for community safety. This heavily theorized work provides some context to our refusal to engage in the reform process. The DOJ wants a better, more professional, and re-legimitatized policing. RCAPS, We Charge Genocide and similar groups are working to building alternative institutions.
From here, the annotated bibliography covers relevant empirical research on community policing, with specific focus on Chicago. This work questions the efficacy of community policing: casting doubt on its impact on crime, its ability to meaningfully involve the community, and officer’s faith in the strategy. The final two articles further support our findings about gentrification and detail the shift of community development from a largely grassroots effort to a much smaller and fragmented one led by professionalized groups. This historical context provides interesting parallels to and perspective on the present.
We share this experience and these sources to document Chicago’s resistance to community policing. We call on other groups in similar struggles to question community policing and resist the larger efforts to pacify our movement.
Annotated Bibliography on Community Policing
A Supplement to The Counter-CAPS Report
Critical Perspectives
A critique of the concept of militarization that argues community policing is compatible with the more punitive policing strategies associated with “militarized” police. A challenge to the notion that community policing is a viable way to reform policing post-Ferguson.
An analysis of community policing as the domestic application of counterinsurgency or the political work of law enforcement to rebuild legitimacy of the state. In these operations, police will often work with and through faith leaders and civic to channel and control opposition. Community policing does not build “good governance.” It is the work of public diplomacy and outreach that complements the use of state’s repressive force.
This heavily theorized PhD dissertation contrasts autonomous projects for community safety against state security initiatives. Grounded in a feminist politics of care, projects for community safety construct “common” relations of social reproduction, providing ways to address social needs, share information, and link communities. These efforts represent a sharp contrast to community policing, theorized as a technique of state power conditioned by colonial histories (such as counterinsurgency) that operates today to manage precarity and disrupt challenges to the racialized and gendered relations that enable the exploitation of labor and accumulation of capital to proceed.
Relevant Empirical and Historical Studies
A statistical analysis of homicide and robbery in164 American cities that finds community policing had little effect on the decline in violent crime.
The culmination of twelve years of study, the definitive account of CAPS concludes that the program failed to produce meaningful community control over police. Officers retain control of decision making and agenda-setting. Proportional to population, participation in beat meetings is abysmally low, typically less than half a percent of the neighborhood. The result is depoliticized representation: limited participation without binding votes or any mechanism for public accountability.
Survey of CPD officers that found ambivalent opinions about CAPS and doubts concerning its impact on crime rates.
This focus group study on the impact of gentrification finds that many respondents contend that crime and community policing are being manipulated to control or displace low-income residents. Residents community areas where tensions around gentrification are high (Uptown and West Town/Humboldt Park) felt that CAPS is promoting the power of wealthier, incoming residents, while disempowering the less affluent, current residents. Notably, the research team did not explicitly ask about CAPS. Instead, the issue emerged organically as an unexpected finding of the study.
Betancur, J. J., & Gills, D. C. (2004). Community Development in Chicago: From Harold Washington to Richard M. Daley. The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science594(1), 92-108.
This article details the transformation of community development in Chicago from a predominately grass roots movement for social change to a much smaller and fragmented one led by professionalized groups. Community development has been absconded to serve the interests of progrowth and corporate interests rather than used as a tool to promote fairness, access, and equity in low-income neighborhoods. As part of this shift, the rise of community policing empowered most conservative community elements to work with the police and criminalized poverty. In particular, community policing has changed the city’s approach to homelessness and youth, replacing social workers and individual focus on treatment and care with policing and an emphasis on risk management.

It Is Human Rights.

It Is Human Rights.

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Above Photo: From
Not all violence is equal. The difference matters. A civilian killing another civilian is a crime. A member of the police killing a civilian is an entirely different question, legally and morally. The police and other similarly armed bodies are direct representatives of the power of the state. Their duties and obligations toward civilians are qualitatively different from those of civilians. So are their actions, especially the violent ones. The armed forces of the state (police, FBI, SWAT team, National Guard, on-duty member of the armed forces, and the rest) are legally (and morally) obligated to protect the people of the country. That is their sworn duty: to protect the civilian population.
An armed representative of the state who kills a civilian, therefore, commits not just a crime like any other person. No, that official commits an abuse of power, a violation of human rights. The act itself is called a “summary execution.” The states who fail to stop violence against civilians on the part of their armed bodies are, rightfully so, labeled as violators of human rights. We are all familiar with the states so considered–repressive states that eliminate their political enemies through violent means (detention without trial, disappearance, torture, execution). But political opponents are not the only category of people who fall victim to state-sanctioned violence: historically, members of ethnic or racial minorities have also experienced violence at the hands of the armed bodies of the state. Guatemala between 1954 and 1996 comes to mind. There the military government carried out a genocidal campaign against the indigenous Maya population. Not all violations of human rights rise to the level of genocide. Not every government who engages in human rights violations is run by men in olive green uniforms. That is the case for the United States.
Police departments across the country routinely execute black and brown men in plain daylight. We do not know exactly how long those violations of bodily integrity have been taking place—until months ago, there was no daily video evidence for everyone to see. The African-American community has denounced “police brutality” for decades (centuries, really) but who listened to their voices? Even today, Americans refuse to believe that the country’s armed bodies commit such violence. Or, when the visual proof is impossible to dismiss, they defend the police, assuming the person “must have done something” that somehow forced the police to open fire until death.
American Secretaries of State echoed the denials — …”
But ask the question: Who deserves execution at a children’s park? Who deserves execution at a traffic stop? Who deserves execution for failing to raise their arms high above their heads? Who deserves execution for selling CDs or cigarettes? Does anyone deserve execution for talking back?
There was plenty of denial about detentions, disappearances, torture, and execution in Guatemala too. And in El Salvador. And Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, and Paraguay since the 1970s. The elite of every single one of those countries denied their governments violated human rights.
American Secretaries of State echoed the denials — after all, every single one of those governments were US allies in the Cold War against the “evil empire” of the USSR, the state that embodied violations of human rights in the American imagination. That is to be expected. But many ordinary people throughout Latin America made the same argument. If pushed to admit what was in front of their faces, they murmured, “they must have done something.” Because they were not part of the groups experiencing the violence, they refused to accept that their armed bodies were structurally, criminally, systematically violent against Others in their societies. Because their privilege (class, political affiliation, ideological preference, light-skin) protected them from the men with guns, they made excuses for the violence. They supported their armed forces; some even believed the police were the victims. That is where we are in the United States right at the moment. Without a military regime, without the physical elimination of political opponents. No, in the US the armed bodies of the state execute men of color.
But it need not be that way. In contrast to common crime, violations of human rights can be addressed easily. The government knows who the culprits are. They are easily identifiable; they receive a paycheck from the government every month. All the government has to do to stop such behavior is to prosecute the culprits. And here the US can follow the lead of the governments of Argentina, Chile, and Guatemala. All three have made a turn and brought to justice members of their armed bodies for human rights violations. Even if some were abroad in Britain (remember Pinochet?) or Miami and Los Angeles, those governments are investigating and using extradition treaties to make sure those men face trails in the countries where they committed their crimes. By comparison, the US government has an easy task. No borders to cross, no international paperwork to file. Arrest officers responsible for executing civilians. Bring them to trail. And stop letting officers who execute civilians go free. Demonstrate the state is committed to protecting human rights. Because civilian lives matter. Because Black Lives Matter.

Debtors Prison Costs Cities Millions

Debtors Prison Costs Cities Millions

Above: Often considered relics of the past, debtors’ prisons still exist in the U.S., but lawsuits by civil rights groups are making progress toward shutting them down. Nineteenth century painting of “A Debtor in Fleet Street Prison” by the English artist Thomas Hosmer Shepherd via Wikimedia.

Striking a Blow Against Debtors’ Prisons 

Amount that Jennings, Missouri, has agreed to pay out to people jailed because they were unable to pay court fines and fees they owed: $4.75 million
Number of people who will receive payments under the settlement: almost 2,000
Days they collectively spent in jail over the last five years: about 8,300
Month in which Equal Justice Under Law, a civil rights group involved in the Jennings case, filed a federal class-action lawsuit alleging systemic violations of basic human and civil rights in the New Orleans legal system resulting in a modern-day debtors’ prison: 9/2015
Percent of government agencies involved in the New Orleans criminal justice system that rely on criminal convictions and high money bonds for funding:100
Under the part of the system in New Orleans that’s drawn the most public outrage, amount per felony charge a judge can assess on individual defendants to fund a judicial expense account that can pay for everything from court staff salaries to coffee: $2,000
Month in which Equal Justice Under Law and the MacArthur Justice Centerat the University of Mississippi School of Law filed a federal class-action lawsuit against Jackson, Mississippi, over a forced-labor camp and debtors’ prison used by the city: 10/2015
Amount impoverished Jackson residents are able to work off their debt per day at the Hinds County Penal Farm near Jackson: $58
For those unable to work because of age or disability, amount taken off their debt for each day spent in prison: $25
According to the lawsuit, number of Jackson residents who’ve been incarcerated for nonpayment of debts over the past several years: many hundreds
Year in which Equal Justice Under Law was also involved in a lawsuit that resulted in the city of Montgomery, Alabama, agreeing to change its procedures so people would no longer be jailed for their inability to afford fines and other fees associated with minor traffic violations: 2014
In the case that sparked the Montgomery lawsuit, days an out-of-work grandmother was ordered to serve in jail because she was unable to pay old tickets and the fees charged by a private probation company hired by the city to collect fines: 31
Amount debtors jailed in Montgomery had their debt reduced by for each day spent in jail: $50
Additional amount they were able to reduce their debt by agreeing to perform janitorial tasks such as scrubbing feces and blood from jail floors: $25
(Click on figure to go to source.)

Education Enabling Cultural Decline

If given everything free, tiny housing units, Internet, smart devices, food, education, Netflix, pot, and public transportation passes, the youth will remain on the globalist environmental social justice train forever as anonymous global citizens

Education Enabling Cultural Decline

Trying to have a rational discussion based on facts with a College of Education graduate who uses Common Core teaching methods, how children learn, and the dumbing down of America’s education, is like trying to reason with a petulant child who happens to be a member of the Communist Party USA.
They take everything very personal and in a fascistic way, it’s their way or the highway. If we don’t do it this way, children will be doomed forever. Since 1979 when Jimmy Carter established the College of Education (which alone gobbles up close to $75 billion a year), our children’s education has gone down significantly as evidenced by test scores and a shameless lack of general knowledge.

Just because you are able to use technology expertly and know how to look up information does not make you smart, you just know how to use a search engine. What you are able to do with that information is another story. I’ve had technological savvy students who actually knew very little, were awkward, lacked common sense, and social skills.

On the other hand, I’ve had students who did not care that much for technology, were talented and creative, but were not exactly top scorers on the standardized ACT or SAT tests. Yet these students became quite successful in life.

According to Howard Gardner (Harvard Graduate School of Education), there are eight intelligence types and we all have some percentage of musical-rhythmic, visual-spatial, verbal-linguistic, logical-mathematical, bodily-kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalistic abilities, weaker in some, stronger in others. It is because of this nature of the human being that we should not box students into testing molds, one size fits all, particularly when public education has a strong component of indoctrination by those who write the textbooks, the curricula, the teaching materials, and the standardized tests.

Teaching to a standard determined by progressive academia is a disservice to the wonderful talent in our schools. Teaching is an art and the fly-by-night teaching methodologies that have come and gone since 1979 prove that they were invented by control freaks that had one goal in mind, a pliant society of busy bees under the guidance of academia in service of the ruling elites who fund their secular ideas and methods.

I’ve heard progressives for decades vociferously demanding the separation of church and state, even though our country was founded on Judeo-Christian principles and God and prayer always had a place in the classroom and in government. But now, the same progressive academics are teaching in every grade, through Common Core Standards, indoctrination into Islam, forcing Christianity and prayer out of schools and out of extra-curricular activities. What happened to their cries of separation of church and state?

Patrick Deneen wrote about the loss of our cultural identity in his essay, ”How a generation lost its common culture.”

“My students are know-nothings. They are exceedingly nice, pleasant, trustworthy, mostly honest, well-intentioned, and utterly decent. But their brains are largely empty, devoid of any substantial knowledge that might be the fruits of an education in an inheritance and a gift of a previous generation. They are the culmination of western civilization, a civilization that has forgotten nearly everything about itself, and as a result, has achieved near-perfect indifference to its own culture.”
As a retired teacher of thirty years, I am certain that the concerted effort to mindlessly indoctrinate students into the progressive PC construct, a political correctness that has constrained everybody’s freedom of speech, turning students into whiny ninnies who need a safe space from their inner real or imagined fears of divergent opinions, and to distort and rewrite history in the vein of Howard Zinn’s very popular textbook that is widely used around the country, has contributed to the decline and loss of cultural identity to such a degree that students are ashamed of their own history, of their nation’s exceptionalism and accomplishments, of their common citizenship, and of their own culture.

Sadly, these students are busy destroying and replacing their own culture with the culture of other primitive societies they were told in schools to admire and venerate, simple cultures that are invading western civilization with the blessing of the United Nations and regressive western governments. It is baffling to think that these are generations of children and grandchildren of great Americans who conquered space and made flight possible.

The chickens of intolerance and communist social justice have come home to roost on the American campus. Decades of Marxist indoctrination by the vaunted communist academia are finally paying off—our cultural heritage is replaced by cultural Marxism and by primitive cultures that are deemed superior to ours and worshipped.

Our mis-educated youth, who can barely read or write a complete and coherent paragraph, but their fingers fly on Twitter in hashtags and 140 characters, staring constantly like robotic drones into illuminated smart devices, are now chasing Pokémon-Go.

Young people don’t seem to care if their culture survives or not. If they are given everything free, tiny housing units, Internet, smart devices, food, education, Netflix, pot, and public transportation passes, they will remain on the globalist environmental social justice train forever as anonymous global citizens.

Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh

We May Be at a Greater Risk of Nuclear Catastrophe Than During the Cold War

We May Be at a Greater Risk of Nuclear Catastrophe Than During the Cold War

Astounding increases in the danger of nuclear weapons have paralleled provocative foreign policy decisions that needlessly incite tensions between Washington and Moscow.

“Today, the danger of some sort of a nuclear catastrophe is greater than it was during the Cold War,” warns William Perry, “and most people are blissfully unaware of this danger.”
A former U.S. defense secretary from 1994 to 1997, Perry has been an inside player in the business of nuclear weapons for over 60 years. And his book, My Journey at the Nuclear Brink, is a sober read. It’s also a powerful counterpoint to NATO’s current European strategy, which envisions nuclear weapons as a deterrent to war: The purpose of nukes “is to prevent major war, not to wage wars,” argues the Alliance’s magazine, NATO Review.

But as Perry points out, it’s only by chance that the world has avoided a nuclear war — sometimes by nothing more than dumb luck — and, rather than enhancing our security, nukes “now endanger it.”

The 1962 Cuban missile crisis is generally represented as a dangerous standoff resolved by sober diplomacy. In fact, it was a single man — Russian submarine commander Vasili Arkhipov — who countermanded orders to launch a nuclear torpedo at an American destroyer that could have set off a full-scale nuclear exchange between the Soviet Union and the United States.
There were numerous other incidents that brought the world to the brink. On a quiet morning in November 1979, a NORAD computer reported a full-scale Russian sneak attack with land and sea-based missiles, which led to scrambling U.S. bombers and alerting U.S. missile silos to prepare to launch. But it turned out there was no Soviet attack — just an errant test tape.

Lest anyone think the incident was an anomaly, a little more than six months later NORAD computers erroneously announced that Soviet submarines had launched 220 missiles at the United States. This time the cause was a defective chip that cost 49 cents — again resulting in scrambling interceptors and putting the silos on alert.
But don’t these examples prove that accidental nuclear war is unlikely? That conclusion is a dangerous illusion, argues Perry, because the price of being mistaken is so high — and because the world is a more dangerous place than it was in 1980.

A Worsening Climate

It’s been 71 years since atomic bombs destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and humanity’s memory of those events has dimmed. But even were the entire world to read John Hersey’s Hiroshima, it would have little idea of what we face today.
The bombs that obliterated those cities were tiny by today’s standards, and comparing “Fat Man” and “Little Boy” — the incongruous names of the weapons that leveled both cities — to modern weapons stretches any analogy beyond the breaking point. If the Hiroshima bomb represented approximately 27 freight cars filled with TNT, a one-megaton warhead would require a train 300 miles long.

Each Russian RS-20V Voevoda intercontinental ballistic missile packs 10 megatons.

What’s made today’s world more dangerous, however, aren’t just advances in the destructive power of nuclear weapons, but a series of actions by the last three U.S. administrations.
First was the decision by President Bill Clinton to abrogate a 1990 agreement with the Soviet Union not to push NATO further east after the reunification of Germany or to recruit former members of the defunct Warsaw Pact.

NATO has also reneged on a 1997 pledge not to install “permanent” and “significant” military forces in former Warsaw Pact countries. This month NATO decided to deploy four battalions on or near the Russian border, arguing that since the units will be rotated, they’re not “permanent” or large enough to be “significant.” It’s a linguistic slight of hand that doesn’t amuse Moscow.

Second was the 1999 U.S.-NATO intervention in the Yugoslav civil war and the forcible dismemberment of Serbia. It’s somewhat ironic that Russia has been accused of using force to “redraw borders in Europe” by annexing Crimea, which is exactly what NATO did to create Kosovo. The U.S. subsequently built Camp Bond Steel, Washington’s largest base in the Balkans.
Third was President George W. Bush’s unilateral withdrawal from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty and the decision by the Obama administration to deploy anti-missile systems in Romania and Poland, as well as Japan and South Korea.

Last is the decision by the current White House to spend upwards of $1 trillion upgrading its nuclear weapons arsenal, which includes building bombs with smaller yields, a move that many critics argue blurs the line between conventional and nuclear weapons.

Strategic Uncertainty

The Yugoslav War and NATO’s move east convinced Moscow that the U.S.-led alliance was surrounding Russia with potential adversaries, and the deployment of anti-missile systems, or ABMs — supposedly aimed at Iran’s non-existent nuclear weapons — was seen as a threat to Russia’s nuclear deterrent.
One immediate effect of ABMs was to chill the possibility of further cuts in the number of nuclear weapons. When Obama proposed another round of warhead reductions, the Russians turned it down cold, citing the anti-missile systems as the reason. “How can we take seriously this idea about cuts in strategic nuclear potential while the United States is developing its capabilities to intercept Russian missiles?” asked Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin.

When the U.S. endorsed the 2014 coup against the pro-Russian government in Ukraine, it ignited the current crisis that has led to several dangerous incidents between Russian and NATO forces — at last count, according to the European Leadership Network, more than 60. Several large war games were also held on Moscow’s borders. Former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev went so far as to accuse NATO of making “preparations for switching from a cold war to a hot war.”

In response, the Russians have also held war games involving up to 80,000 troops.

It is unlikely that NATO intends to attack Russia, but the power differential between the U.S. and Russia is so great — a “colossal asymmetry,” Dmitri Trenin, head of the Carnegie Moscow Center, told theFinancial Times — that the Russians have abandoned their “no first use” of nuclear weapons pledge.

It’s the lack of clear lines that makes the current situation so fraught with danger. While the Russians have said they would consider using small tactical nukes if “the very existence of the state” was threatened by an attack, NATO is being deliberately opaque about its possible tripwires. According to NATO Review, nuclear “exercises should involve not only nuclear weapons states… but other non-nuclear allies,” and “to put the burden of the doubt on potential adversaries, exercises should not point at any specific nuclear thresholds.”

In short, keep the Russians guessing. The immediate problem with such a strategy is: What if Moscow guesses wrong?
That won’t be hard to do. The U.S. is developing a long-range cruise missile — as are the Russians — that can be armed with conventional or nuclear warheads. But how will an adversary know which is which? And given the old rule in nuclear warfare — use ‘em or lose ‘em — uncertainty is the last thing one wants to engender in a nuclear-armed foe.

Indeed, the idea of no “specific nuclear thresholds” is one of the most extraordinarily dangerous and destabilizing concepts to come along since the invention of nuclear weapons.

Cold Wars of Choice

There is currently no evidence that Russia contemplates an attack on the Baltic states or countries like Poland. Given the enormous power of the United States, which offers a security guarantee to NATO members, such an undertaking would court national suicide.
Nor do Russia’s recent border conflicts suggest otherwise. Moscow’s “aggression” against Georgia and Ukraine was provoked. Georgia attacked Russia, not vice versa, and the Ukraine coup torpedoed a peace deal negotiated by the European Union, the United States, and Russia. Imagine Washington’s view of a Moscow-supported coup in Mexico, followed by an influx of Russian weapons and trainers.

In a memorandum to the recent NATO meetings in Warsaw, the group Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity argued as much. “There is not one scintilla of evidence of any Russian plan to annex Crimea before the coup in Kiev and coup leaders began talking about joining NATO,” the members insisted. “If senior NATO leaders continue to be unable or unwilling to distinguish between cause and effect, increasing tension is inevitable with potentially disastrous results.”

The organization of former intelligence analysts also sharply condemned the NATO war games that followed. “We shake our heads in disbelief when we see Western leaders seemingly oblivious to what it means to the Russians to witness exercises on a scale not seen since Hitler’s army launched ‘Unternehmen Barbarossa’ 75 years ago, leaving 25 million Soviet citizens dead.”
While the NATO meetings in Warsaw agreed to continue economic sanctions aimed at Russia for another six months and to station four battalions of troops in Poland and the Baltic states — along with separateU.S. forces in Bulgaria and Poland — there was an undercurrent of dissent. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras called for deescalating the tensions with Russia and for considering Russian President Vladimir Putin a partner rather than an enemy.
Greece was not alone. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier called NATO maneuvers on the Russian border “warmongering” and “saber rattling.” French President Francois Hollande said Putin should be considered a “partner,” not a “threat,” and France tried to reduce the number of troops being deployed in the Baltic and Poland. Italy has been increasingly critical of the sanctions as well.

Rather than recognizing the growing discomfort of a number of NATO allies and that beefing up forces on Russia’s borders might be destabilizing, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry recently inked defense agreements with Georgia and Ukraine.
After disappearing from the radar for several decades, nukes are back, and the decision to modernize the U.S. arsenal will almost certainly kick off a nuclear arms race with Russia and China. Russia is already replacing its current ICBM force with the more powerful and long range “Sarmat” ICBM, and China is loading its own missiles with multiple warheads.

Add to this volatile mixture military maneuvers and a deliberately opaque policy in regards to the use of nuclear weapons, and it’s no wonder that Perry thinks that the chances of some catastrophe is a growing possibility.

Conn Hallinan can be read at and