Michael Maiello's picture

    Obama-py Wall Street

    When Henry Louis Gates was arrested, Barack Obama wasn't afraid to step into the fray and to speak his mind.  Yes, he was criticized for interfering in a local matter, but that always struck me as silly.  The President is, of course, allowed to speak up about local matters.  It happens all of the time.  Another criticism was that he was speaking off the cuff and didn't know the whole story.  Fair enough, though it seems his position was basically vindicated in the end.

    So, I think it's time that Obama speaks up about the rampant police brutality and unnecessary arrests of Occupy protesters around the country.  One protester told Obama today:

    “Over 4000 peaceful protesters have been arrested. While bankers continue to destroy the American economy. You must stop the assault on our 1st amendment rights.  Your silence sends a message that police brutality is acceptable. Banks got bailed out. We got sold out.”

    Well, sometimes these protesters can be a little hyperbolic.  I don't think that Obama has sold them out yet.  But it might be time to start ordering up some blanket pardons for any peaceful protesters who might find themselves facing charges.  Maybe it's time for the President to tell America's mayors to stand down.  Maybe local law enforcement needs to known that federal civil rights cases could well be pursued by the attorney general if, say, a bunch of kids are pepper sprayed for sitting where a cop tells them not to.

    Obama's silence about police violence isn't helping the cause.  I know, I know, it would get the Republicans in a tizzy.  But what doesn't?




    Destor, when the protestor said "Banks got bailed out, we got sold out," he was probably referring to what actually happened when trillions in cheap or even free dollars were provided to criminal bankers to prop up the financial system (and enable lucrative bonuses), while zip was provided to homeowners who were victimized by the same financial system. I think that's an accurate criticism of the President, not hyperbole.

    Obama's silence is troublesome. Maybe police brutality here at home isn't something he cares much about.

    What I want to know is if DHS is involved in any of these crackdowns.  Several of them occurred at the same time, which suggests a coordinated strategy.

    DHS is implicated in every step leading from its conceptualization following the WTC assault to the actions we're seeing in the streets today.

    DHS provides riot gear, assault weapons, training, motivation, strategic and tactical coordination of police units all around the country. With facilitation and funding from DHS, our local cops are ready to handle an unruly public. 

    I, too, want to know what role DHS is currently playing in police response to OWS protests, but in a sense it is irrelevant. What we are seeing in the street today is the fruit of the DHS vine.

    What started with the War on Drugs has been invigorated by an IV drip of the GWOT since 2001. 

    It is not the deeds of evil men, but the reactions of good men, that coarsen the nation. 

    I suspect it's the local authorities who are coordinating the response.

    I'll have to look back, but my recollection is that there was a report some days back about a sizeable conference call of mayors, and several of the cities cracked down the next day.

    This seems to be the source of it.



    Seems likely to me.

    From the link:

    "Might it also be more than a coincidence that this succession of police raids started after President Obama left the US for an extended tour of the Pacific Rim?"

    Would it be irresponsible to speculate?  It would be irresponsible not to.


    Ha!  Though, are you doubting Quan's claim that she discussed the issue with other mayos before she acted?

    Great link, Dan. Thank you.

    Of course this is what is happening. We were in for it as soon as we started talking about the "Homeland" and taking it seriously.

    No, but the Firebaggers have been working hard to pin the blame on Obama for the bad actions of municipal and campus police.  As if urban police forces need federal approval before they start teargassing and indiscriminately cracking heads. 

    As you can see further down the thread, where some of our esteemed commenters have decided that Obama should have personally fired the pepper spray cop and is now responsible for the killings at Kent State, which happened when he was about ten years old.

    Is it too much to ask that Obama direct the justice department to launch civil rights investigations in these cases?  Or that these municipal and campus police officers be treated the way anyone videotaped casually pepper spraying another citizen might be treated?

    Yes I do think it's too much to ask at this point.  The justice department doesn't mobilize anywhere near as quickly as the blogosphere does.  To suggest that the federal government should be brought in mere days after a few dozen people have gotten pepper sprayed and beaten (is there a single death attributable to police overreaction to OWS, by the way?) is nonsense.  The OWS people, after touting their courage and steadfastness for a whole month, still want Obama to come in and save their asses.  Next they'll be blaming him for not preventing winter from coming. 

    And there's our difference.  You want to, what... wait until somebody gets killed?  The federal government should act to prevent that and to bring local police forces to heel.

    What we don't know is what being said and done behind the scenes to bring local police forces to heel.  Maybe nothing.  Maybe something.  My guess is there is some discourse and engagement going on - if for any reason, at least for the White House, would be the political blowback on the 2012 elections if something did happen.  City and law enforcement officials are just as sensitive about saving face etc as foreign governments - say one or two of us stepped over the line, you're claiming we all crossed over the line.  Maybe one believes the nature of the situation calls for not considering this sensitivity.  Of course, in the aftermath of something like 9/11 we are appalled over the territorialness and lack of cooperation between local and federal agencies.  One should hold them to a high standard, and they should be above petty things, but are also dealing with real human beings in the real human world and looking at the big picture, just as those calling for immediate publically viewed action is making a claim to the big picture.

    I think the link I posted above from sfgate gives us some idea of what is going on behind the scenes.

    Those opposed to the 1% will be deemed as terrorists.  

    It provides a better picture Dan. They have the power and they'll use it.

    Everyone should be afraid; Freedom and Liberty in America is now controlled by the 1% 

    We The People lost on  9/11.  To resist is futile.

    According to PERF's website, general membership in the group is exclusive to “the executive head of a municipal, county or state-funded agency that provides general police services. The agency must have at least 100 full-time employees, or serve a population of 50,000 or more people.”

    That these agencies are all dealing with a similar issue - evicting protesters who they believe to be illegally creating tent cities, and dealing with potential volatile situations in the aftermath, that are reaching out to each other is not surprising.  In fact, if it was dealing with something like a rise in armed right wing militias, you would be appalled if it turned out they weren't talking to each other.  But since you disagree with the notion of stopping with the encampments, their coordination efforts is rotten to the core and deeply nefarious.  Maybe they are discussing the best approaches to achieve their larger objectives in a manner that does not lead to violence, ways to prepare the front line officers to decrease the likelihood of brutality, and which maintain the capacity for the protesters to peacefully assemble.

      "In fact, if it was dealing with something like a rise in armed right wing militias, you would be appalled if it turned out they weren't talking to each other."

    You have my attitude nailed, Trope. If I learn that leaders of communities are meeting to coordinate a response to something that is legitimate and then I see that they respond in a way that is illegitimate and brutal, I don't like it. It worries me. I find that I tend to bitch about that sort of thing. If I were to see them responding legitimately, and intelligently, and legally, to a real threat, I might not go out of my way to give them all lovey-hugs, but I would definitely like it.

     Your parsing of the argument here is about as brilliant as usual.

    who they believe to be illegally creating tent cities,

    Tent cities in response to people being evicted from their homes?

    You think under those conditions it's an unreasonable act? 

    Maybe you prefer they walk 30 miles outside of town, preferably to another township, then the government will hear their petitions? 

    Obama apparently has the same mindset.

    He washes his hands like Pilate,  and the innocent get beaten and peppered sprayed

    New Living Translation (©2007)
    Pilate saw that he wasn't getting anywhere and that a riot was developing. So he sent for a bowl of water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, "I am innocent of this man's blood. The responsibility is yours!" Matthew 27:14

    Kadaffi, Mubarak, Nixon,  60' s Mayor Daly.

    sic the dogs and pepper spray on the dissenters. then turn a blind eye to the maltreatment of your citizens, just so Obama can appease his corporate buddies.  

    Go home protestors......... or else 

    You may be right, Peter. We'll see.

    But in a broader sense it doesn't matter. If you train a group of dogs to attack when they witness certain behavior, they'll attack even if you're not there to give the command.

    That's what DHS, empowered by Congress and the administration, has been doing for the past ten years, training and equipping state and local police to attack, and providing military-grade equipment for them to use. Decentralizing tactical control and deploying skills and materiel to the front lines: Main Street in your home town.

    Who are they being trained to attack? Ostensibly, al Qaida. Who are they actually attacking? You and me.

    And, of course, you'll remember that George W. Bush struck down posse comitatus and deployed 20,000 U.S. troops on American streets to assist with crowd control. Just in case cops with pepper spray, sound cannons, automatic weapons, personnel armor and armed personnel carriers can't accomplish the mission on their own.

    Just on the training side of things, one only has to look at Seattle during WTO to know that things are likely going to be worse for the protesters if the police force doesn't know how to coordinate its crowd control and the officers are not well-versed in dealing with a flowing and volatile situation. 

    The question isn't whether they are trained (and well-armed), but the mission and objectives of those who deploy the trained officers into the street. 

    Your lack of a link leaves out the full story of Obama's reaction. Whether you think it was good or bad, it's sorta helpful to know a fuller narrative of what happened.

    From this WaPo report, at least one of the protestors was complimentary:

    ....Audience members, mostly high school students, booed, but Obama quieted them, saying, “It’s okay.”

    Then he directly addressed the protesters.....

    Tom LaValley, 23, who described himself as a member of Occupy New Hampshire, told reporters later that about 20 demonstrators had stood in line Monday to obtain tickets. He was complimentary of Obama’s response.

    “He looked us in the eye, let us speak,” LaValley said. “He didn’t drag us out, didn’t have security come get us.”

    I realize you are asking him to make a strong forthright statement against current incidents of police brutality.

    Yet, isn't this sort of self-explanatory somewhat about what Obama's opinion is on this: "He didn’t drag us out, didn’t have security come get us.” It must have been pre-planned with security that should Occupiers show up at an Obama event, they would be allowed to speak; I'm pretty sure the Secret Service, like several U.S. mayors, would prefer there not be any protestors there at all.

    Your question, "...isn't this sort of self-explanatory, somewhat..." gets to the heart of the problem that many have with President Obama. 

    The President handled the demonstrators with respect, heard them out. Big plus for him. Compare that to the zone of ideological purity that was enforced around George Bush whenever he hit the road.

    But Obama must address the demonstrator's direct challenge:

    “We must stop the assault our First Amendment rights,” the group said. “Your silence sends a message that police brutality is acceptable.”

    And he has not.

    As much as I believe that Obama doesn't think these people should be hauled off in paddy wagons, this doesn't really do much for me (and I wasn't hiiding it, honest!)  I fully expect that the President would not have these people arrested or removed.  If he had, this would be a very different post.

    I saw President Obama campaigning for Democrats in Connecticut during midterms, and he was heckled there as well. The crowd started to boo the protestors, but the President asked us to stop and hear them out. They were protesting that the government wasn't doing enough about AIDs, which is probably true. 

    The President listened to them, then explained how much more resources and money his administration was funding AIDs as opposed to President Bushes. He then asked them why they were protesting him, and suggested they go protest the GOP who were holding up more funding.

    I think you're right, Destor, it would have been horrible if he had the protestors escorted out, but I think that's what people have gotten used to, "free speech zones" and such. At any rate, I was glad to see an adult on the stage. 

    Are you suggesting he invite the UC Davis pepper spray cop over for a beer?

    Obama has more than enough on his 'to do' list without dipping into state cop/OWS issues, many of these guys are under current investigation.

    Holder, though, should send FBI agents to gather evidence and do interviews, to let these brutes know, and their victims, someone is watching and defending people's rights under the 1st and 4th Amendments.

    I'm suggesting the latter. All he has to do is say that he has directed he AG to conduct a civil rights investigation. He should investigate the Oakland Seattle and NY police forces as well.

    Unfortunately, hell will freeze over before DOJ lifts a finger to investigate: (1) police misconduct (2) bigshot bank execs.

    Robert Reich is disgusted also, his post today:

    You’ve been seeing this across the country … Americans assaulted, clubbed, dragged, pepper-sprayed … Why? For exercising their right to free speech and assembly — protesting the increasing concentration of income, wealth, and political power at the top. .....Meanwhile, the Supreme Court says money is speech and corporations are people......when real people without money assemble to express their dissatisfaction with all this, they’re told the First Amendment doesn’t apply....Money speaks, and an unlimited amount of it can now be spent bribing and cajoling politicians. Yet peaceful assembly is viewed as a public nuisance and removed by force......When the freedom of speech goes to the highest bidder, ....Nothing less than the future of our democracy is at stake.

    Brrr; it's slightly chilly in here. I took your accusation seriously and went to check for myself; went through the DOJ press releases for this month and last month. Here's what I caught:

    Thursday, November 17, 2011
    Justice Department Opens Investigation into the Miami Police Department


    Thursday, November 10, 2011
    Department of Justice Announces Compensation for Servicemembers as Part of Settlement with Bank of America


    Thursday, November 10, 2011
    Justice Department Reaches Agreement with First Niagara Bank N.A. and HSBC Bank USA N.A. on Divestitures


    Wednesday, November 2, 2011
    Spokane, Wash., Police Officer Convicted of Civil Rights and Obstruction Violations in Connection with Beating Otto Zehm


    Wednesday, November 2, 2011
    Former New Orleans Police Department Lieutenant Sentenced in Connection with Shootings on Danziger Bridge


    Tuesday, November 1, 2011
    Dolton, Ill., Police Officer Arrested on Federal Civil Rights and Obstruction Charges Involving Alleged Use of Excessive Force


    Tuesday, October 4, 2011
    Justice Department Prevails in Three Tax Shelter Cases on Same Day
    Federal Courts Deny Hundreds of Millions in Tax Breaks to Billionaire Dallas Banker, Principal Life Insurance Co. and Wells Fargo & Co.


    AA - We were talking about cops in relation to OWS, not Miami or NO cops shooting or whacking folks. Show us the links for DOJ investigations of cops w/ OWS protestors.

    Did you bother to read the quote from Robert Reich "peaceful assembly... is removed by force" directly before your post?

    We are talking about federal investigations of cops brutalizing demonstrators exercising free speech!!!!

    And your bank links are 'settlements' where no criminal charges were made. And a tax shelter case! Is that your best! Give me a break!

    That is not what lots of people, (not including you apparently), are talking about with the economic meltdown.  Many feel criminal laws were broken on Wall Street by Big Banks and Big finance CEO's related to the mortgage meltdown/ real estate collapse (please don't link the Indian guy who ran the hedge fund convicted of insider trading, he was not one of the big bankers from major firms.)

    What it does show is the DOJ will at least lift a finger to investigate police brutality.  In the case of Miami (which brings to 18 the number of police departments nationwide under review including Puerto Rico, Newark, New Jersey, Seattle, New Orleans and Maricopa county, Arizona) it revolves around incidents that occurred between July 2010 through February 2011.  In other words, it took 9 months for the DOJ to officially announce their investigation.  Given the nature of their bureaucracy, this is not surprising.  So it will probably not until late spring before any official investigation is announced regarding Oakland and NY.  Right now they are one might say investigating whether to investigate.

    Get back to me when a cop (or the 'I take full responsibility' Chancellor at UC Davis) goes to jail, or is fired, over excessive use of force on OWS peaceful demonstrators.

    I see a real double standard here. The footage at Davis and in NYC is damning enough that, had a civilian done these things, they'd have been arrested and likely made to post a heavy bond for the duration of the investigation. Citizens are routinely arrested for far less.

    "4 dead in Ohio" ♪



    Law enforcement officers are not ordinary citizens in these situations.  Unlike ordinary citizens, they are given the authority to make on-site decisions based on a number of variables about the amount of force that is needed. They are also given a number of restrictions.  It is a still a decision, so as in the case of UC Davis, the officers are placed on leave and the incident is investigated.  

    There are some it seems that the police in, say, NYC shouldn't be interfering at all with the protesters.  So any amount of force, even the most minimal amount used to place someone under arrest is being said as brutality.  In a number of these videos, the protesters are seen actively resisting arrest, in a large crowd situation, and the police are seen being very aggressive in achieving a subdued state on the part of the protester.  Some call this brutality.

    Should all of these police officers be arrested and required to post a heavy bond? Does it matter the free speech is political, or is just those expressing their right to party also lead to every officer with a claim of brutality against them be arrested?  Who decides where the line is drawn?

    And just how many quality individuals are going to join the force if they arrested for doing what the orders from high above tell to do just because even though it isn't lawful to block traffic, it is being done for a good cause.

    And just for the record, I think it is a good thing that the DOJ is investigating police forces across the country, and when officers like the ones at UC Davis go over the line, they suffer appropriate consequences. 

    When you have complaints with video evidence like this, I think they need to be taken seriously.  There's not a lot of ambiguity here or in the earlier NYPD pepper spray incident.  This was not an example of back and forth fighting between cops and civilians.

    But it's not common for the Federal government to get involved while something like this is going on:

    UC president launches independent investigation of pepper spraying, Sacramento Bee, Nov. 23.

    Rather, the tradition is for feds to get involved in state and local government issues once a process like the above shows corruption or unfairness in the state and local system, or if no one in state and local is investigating an apparent crime or injustice.

    Now I know you mentioned Obama commenting on the Henry Louis Gates story in your original post. And that you said presidents are allowed to comment on local issues. Which isn't the same as investigating by the DOJ or other Feds, which ended up being the argument in comments.  But I don't know many who thought it was wise for Obama to even comment on that issue. I certainly didn't think it was wise of him. He just got everyone thinking "well you too were a black professional who probably felt a racist police eye on you from time to time," so it made him look like he had personal interest, not objective, voicing an opinion while it was still at the accusation stage.

    I really don't know if it would be wise for him to talk about police crackdowns on protestors or not. I do know that he has now voiced his support for them to be able to speak out. Maybe it's better not to be more specifically supportive at the current time along the lines of denouncing certain police actions. No one can tell what future OWS activities will be like, they might turn violent, they might not.  (We don't even always know who they are; as DanK has complained in the past, there are gun rights conservative libertarians in some OWS groups.) To simply state support for a peaceful example, and not get into issues like the right to pitch tents forever in public areas and the right to practice peaceful resistance when a local government attempts to remove you, might be the wisest thing for a president to do right now. I know, some cops were bad, didn't do the right thing. But it would indeed bring up all the other issues for him to start up on that. And then he'd be accused of trying to tell police how to do their job, yadda yadda. The president always has to think about being the leader of the entire country, he's not just any old Congressperson allowed to bloviate all his thoughts.

    I think in this case, when you have a networked, national movement that isn't going anywhere and local tensions that are just getting worse, that the Federal government has an abiding interest in deterring the local authorities from taking undo action.  My Spider Sense is telling me that this is going to get a lot worse.

    My guess is that individuals from a number of departments (DOJ, FBI, Homeland etc) have had numerous conversations behind the scenes with a number of cities, each with a different agenda depending on the agencies' perspective and objectives.  Now one can take the approach of assuming that everyone on the federal government side has the primary objective of squashing the Occupy movement in every facet it might manifest.  Or one can believe while there may be certain elements with the various federal entities that have such an objective, there are others who have not only a different agenda, but also objective that are supportive of sustaining the movement.  It may not be necessarily these elements are ideologically aligned with the movement, but there objectives to uphold the rights and law of the land puts them on the side of the movement.  Kind of like the FBI agents who were appalled when they saw how the CIA agents was interrogating detainees. 

    In my opinion, this is a pretty big deal. It is big enough that individual actions should not be judged  completely in isolation of how they came about. We do not need highly advanced computer programs written and run by one side of a dispute implemented to decide who was right and who was wrong. We need people making judgments coming out of a culture that believes the state exists to serve the individual, not the other way around.

     "...and when officers like the ones at UC Davis go over the line, they suffer appropriate consequences."
     That is just too obviously wrong. Cops rarely pay an appropriate penalty when their actions cross the line. Even nowadays, when there is a very high chance that their actions are caught on camera.

    " Should all of these police officers be arrested and required to post a heavy bond?"

     The bond system in the United  States is criminally wrong itself so no, I wouldn't set a punitively high bond on them, or on the people they arrest in most cases, which would mean that those people were automatically fined ten percent of that bond whether they were found to be guilty or not. Many protesters are paying that ten percent fine even after being found not guilty because they paid a lawyer a hundred dollars an hour to defend them. Very few cops are facing that situation. That fact becomes a tool of suppression. .

    " Law enforcement officers are not ordinary citizens in these situations."

     Give yourself a gold star, you said something that is correct, but you miss, or ignore, the way they should be different as opposed to the way they usually are different. Cops should be held too a very high standard rather than usually, and by some "always", given the benefit of any doubt the non-doubting, authority-loving see-no- evil-right-or-wrong apologist for their actions can conjure up. Cops are held in distrust and low esteem by a high percentage of people in big cities and probably also in a high percentage of smaller communities. They are largely, I'm certainly not saying completely, responsible for this situation.  But, because that is the situation, I have said for years that anyone who wanted to be a cop should be automatically disqualified.
    "And just how many quality individuals are going to join the force if they arrested for doing what the orders from high above tell to do just because even though it isn't lawful to block traffic, it is being done for a good cause." [My bold]

    Very few really qualified individuals will join but it is partly because there does not exist a very high percentage of people who are, in fact, qualified to be cops. The disqualifying characteristics are mostly psychological. The ones who join think, or else come to believe, that they can stretch the hell out of lawful or unlawful orders and there is very little chance that they will be penalized. Their situation is very much like that of combat soldiers in our last few wars. The situation makes many of them go bad, if only occasionally. But then more often. The fact that most combat soldiers are self-selected means they were looking forward in anticipation of having violent confrontations in which they would show themselves to be brave, at least, if not actually heroes. When they get out many of them choose to become cops. Having come out of that situation gives them a bump up when choices of which one hundred will be chosen out of a thousand applicants to become cops. The cops they become do the things we have seen in video after video.
     I can do my best to understand why these things happen just like you, presumably, do, but the most important starting point in our thinking is to acknowledge that these things did happen. So, when you ask your rhetorical questions about what should be allowed and who should be penalized, I suggest that judgment, rather than strict adherence to arbitrary laws, must sometimes carry the day.   It is my judgment that the cops doing the pepper spraying were so far over the line that we should not ignore that other cops did not stop them. I agree that the superiors that ordered the actions should be held responsible too, right up the line, maybe way up the line, but we should not fail to condemn wrong actions, and the particular individuals that carried out those actions, while we try to understand why they came about. We should not make excuses for them in ways that make it more likely that the bad actions will be repeated.  

    Very few really qualified individuals will join but it is partly because there does not exist a very high percentage of people who are, in fact, qualified to be cops.

    It is this fundamental starting point in which we all go into these discussion that is so important for each of us to be clear about.  You obviously have the view point that looking over the vast numbers of individuals who are in law enforcement are not qualified to be there says you have certain biases when viewing what happens. 

    In some ways, I would agree most people in general are not psychologically prepared for the various scenarios faced by police officers (e.g. the stress of approaching a pulled over car or going up to a domestic dispute and knowing there is a chance one will have a firearm fired at you) and therefore the pool from which we draw our police forces is inevitably flawed.

    But this is a larger topic. 

    I agree that the superiors that ordered the actions should be held responsible too, right up the line, maybe way up the line, but we should not fail to condemn wrong actions, and the particular individuals that carried out those actions, while we try to understand why they came about. We should not make excuses for them in ways that make it more likely that the bad actions will be repeated.

    I agree with you here.  In the particular case of UC Davis, it was the pepper spraying officer in the lead on the spot who ordered back the other officers who were moving in to break up the protest without spray that I was thinking of when I was talking about consequences, not the higher ups who order the general action. 

    It is my judgment that the cops doing the pepper spraying were so far over the line that we should not ignore that other cops did not stop them.

    Here it gets a lot more complicated.  Just as in the military, in order for actions to be done right, it is important that a chain of command is in place and that orders are not questioned.  Of course, there comes a point where there is a line.  You believe that in this particular instance he was so far over the line that this is one case where a cop on the front line should break over that chain of command.

    While there are definitely lessons to be learned for future efforts around crowd control, one might argue in this case that is unreasonable to destroy the career of an otherwise good police officer based on what he or she knew and how he or she was trained because they didn't do the very serious action of breaking that chain.

    Now it does seem you think, or at least suspect, most of them are already guilty of brutality by the mere fact they wanted to become police officers.  And so all of it is just evidence of that suspicion.  If so, we are never going to see eye to eye on this.


    I debated whether to respond to this, but...pepper spraying being equated with the Holocaust? Really? What is the color of the clouds in your world?

    It's clear: apparently your mind is clouded?

    It is no excuse to say you followed orders from Superiors  

    We are a Nation of principles and laws not of Power.

    The Nuremberg Trial: Lessons for Engineers, and Everyone Else

    "The lesson I learned from recently reading a one-volume history of the proceedings is that, although the Nazi regime was a unique chapter in history, the motivations and causes for many of their heinous acts are still with us. And advances in technology mean that the same things the Nazis did crudely and inefficiently then can be done elegantly and efficiently today.......Anyone whose existence imposed an economic burden on the State was a candidate for at least a concentration camp, and ultimately execution......doctors" performed experiments on prisoners, not only without their consent, but with flagrant disregard for elementary standards of decency, medical ethics, or safety......All these things were permissible once the "doctors" made the mental transition to objectify their subjects: the prisoners were no longer human beings like their torturers, but only raw material for scientific investigation.


    once the "doctors"  POLICE made the mental transition to objectify their (target) subjects: the prisoners PROTESTORS were no longer human beings.  

    Shooting Pepper spray is just the first step made in the mental transition.  

    Disrespect for fellow US citizens. What's next disappearing dissidents?

    I might respond by going into the reality that society functions by following orders from superiors starting with our parents - and while never excuse - it is also the way it is, and when we look at things we attempt to place things in context, to look at matters of degree, and extenuating circumstances.  I could even respond to how so many on the protest side have objectified the police, no longer seeing them as human beings, and therefore are on their way to committing a Holocaust.  But this would all be lost in your fanaticism.

    that society functions by following orders from superiors starting with our parents - and while never excuse - it is also the way it is,

    It is the reason society is DYSFUNCTIONAL

    We cannot let those in our society who are without discipline or moral values adulterate uprightness?

    It appears that even you has succumbed to "it's just the way it is"  only because you have fallen prey to such nonsense.  It is only "the way it is, because some have not resisted the unrighteous attitudes..  

    I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue!  Barry Morris Goldwater



    Okay - who gets to decide what is liberty and what is justice?  There was a time when slavery was considered by good Christian men and women to be fine and just.  And what about the abortion?  Is a citizen who believes that abortion is depriving a human of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, is there no behavior considered not extreme to stop those who are participating in it? Is it a virtue to use no moderation when attempting to keep someone from seeking a legal service from the medical community?  Is the state evil if they seek to intervene in the efforts of these particular non-moderate people who do not recognize limits on their behavior and the non-authority of the state to dictate the laws of the community?

    Slavery was never acceptable to True Christians.

    Voluntary servitude to pay back ones debts, is not slavery.

    So now you know who the true Christians are, as opposed to all those false ones throughout history.  And through what authority have you come to that knowledge, upon what authority do you stand to designate those who are true and those who are false?  Whose version of the Bible has the authority to express the true words of God? By whose authority was that version deemed the true version?

    So all this moderation isn't a virtue stuff is okay only if one has the true belief and not applicable to all people in a society?

    Matthew 7 "By their fruitage you will know'

    So Matthew is your authority?  And who explained to you what fruitage is?  defined the different kinds?  How did you know to trust them?  By what authority?  And what if my authority is different and gives me different interpretation of fruitage?  How can we live together peacefully in a society?  


    Trope, is it really your contention that the function of society is determined by authoritarianism? Following orders from superiors? 

    A remarkable view of society and reality, coming from the keyboard of a post-structuralist.

    I suppose this is true always and everywhere then, built in to the structure of the behavior of humans in families and groups. Right?

    Well, if we go with the notion that structure of structure is play, then built within an authoritarian structure (look at social animals in the wild...*) is the undermining elements of egalitarianism (or something like that) or maybe individualism.  From order comes chaos.  Yet from chaos comes order. 

    But given a limited space I would point to Andrew Schmooker's The Parable of the Tribes:

    - “The parable of the tribes” is used to describe schematically how one aggressive tribe among an otherwise peaceful group can force the spread of the “ways of power” throughout the system: power becomes a contaminant that, once introduced, becomes universal abetted and magnified through innovations in organization and technology.

    If we reduce each individual within a society as representing a tribe in and of itself, the means of containing an uncontrolled exercise of individual compulsion to meet individual needs / desires have to be found.  With the introduction of symbolic thought through language into the mix, which provides if not an override at least a distortion of the biological constraints, societies have developed formal and informal means to achieve the same end. One of these manifestations of authoritarianism which can be found in every society, and woven into all facets of it. 

    Unfortunately and fortunately, because these societal developments of constraints are in essence mere constructs they are subject to the undermining forces of play.  So we can witness forms which we can judge (with more constructs) as being good or bad, positive or negative, beneficial or detrimental.  

    So society is a function of forces whose equation seek greater authoritarianism and those that seek less.  Society requires both, and yet is also harmed by both. 

    Wow. Is Gibber your first language, or did you have to take courses? 

    I'll give you this... it's a hell of a performance piece you got goin' here Trope. As political or social commentary, it's rubbish - but hey. Great art. 

    "Well, if we go with the notion that structure of structure is play.... So society is a function of forces whose equation seek greater authoritarianism and those that seek less...."



    Great art.

    If we perceive art is a lie that tells a truth...well then.

    But, really, we are dealing with notions that are too complex to be adequately addressed in this kind of format. Trying to reduce it down, it does not always make sense when one is looking for simplistic concepts, like authority is bad. We could pick at random some starting point, say, Michel Foucault, when addressing power, authority and society, discuss that for a couple of weeks, and then move on to other things for the next coming months.

    But in the end at least I am throwing something out there.  And rather than counter with something, you just criticize.  You're good at that.  You seem like a bitter film critic who always dreamed of being a director, but now is left with just the option of slashing into those who actually put something onto the big screen.


    I also believe they should be held to a higher standard of behavior - and I think on a day to day basis, as they deal with the domestic violence disputes and barroom brawls, etc.  that most officers in general do keep to this higher standard.

    But if they don't ... who can blame them. Amirite?


    Is to be used to protect the weakest amongst us;


    The Parable of the Unmerciful Servant

     ……..   23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand talents(1) was brought to him. 25 Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt.

       26 “The servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ 27 The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.

       28 “But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii(2)  He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded.

       29 “His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.’

       30 “But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. 31 When the other servants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed and went and told their master everything that had happened.

       32 “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ 34 In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.        Matthew 18:21-35  New International Version 1984 

    The banks were bailed out;  we were sold out.  

    Where was the PRESIDENT OR HIS LEADERSHIP, when it came time for the leader of our Nation, to lead us in the ways of;  Justice for ALL?

    (1) ten thousand talents = millions of dollars

    (2) hundred denarii, = a couple hundred dollars

    Offered without comment, just as more on topic; go to the link to read the emails he describes:

    Two Views of Pepper-Spray, Abuse of Power, and the Militarization of the Police

    By James Fallows, Atlantic.com, Nov 22 2011, 1:41 PM ET

    The first is from a reader who asks not to be named. She underscores the point Ta-Nehisi Coates makes this morning, with a video of a young black man being pepper-sprayed in Illinois for no apparent reason. (Supposedly he was "resisting arrest" after being detained for ... jaywalking.) Their point is that what has happened before the world's eyes at Davis, Berkeley, and other recent Occupy sites goes on all the time but attracts no general notice because it affects the "wrong" people. In answer to my question, "How Did We Let This Happen?" -- "this" being the conversion of police forces into military units -- today's unnamed reader replies:


    The next is from a veteran police officer, Max Geron of Dallas, who stresses that he is speaking strictly for himself. Just to make sure that message gets across, I'm saying it here in addition to leaving in the first paragraph of his letter. He explains how the recent out-of-control situations look from a police point of view. If you're rushed for time, skip down to the part beginning "From a tactical perspective":


    You don't need to comment Art, a picture say's a thousand words.

    The police are gearing up to use force against American citizens, it's obvious.

    To me several of your comments on this thread sound like you're salivating at the possibility of violence in the streets, similar to some of your comments in the past. Just sayin' that's the way it comes off to me, that you sound excited about it, hoping it will come true. I don't know how to reply to such "predictions." You obviously believe in your ability to predict the future, and in the completed future narratives you create gleaned from comparing current events to past history and scripture, so there's really no reason to respond. Just explaining  why I usually don't respond. Lack of response should not signify agreement, however. Don't presume what you think is obvious is what others think is obvious.

    P.S. My business concerns pictures. In my opinion, they can lie, and often.

    You seem to ignore everything I have written in the past about the POTENTIAL for violence in the streets.

    The potential is real and I am also aware that violence was prophesied.

    So everyday the signs of prophetic fulfillment remind me of the scriptures that  say

    (To those who are keen enough to observe the warning signs)

    25“There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. 26 Men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. 27 At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”  Luke 21:25

    (The Sea is the People)

    it's not salivation Art, its' being joyful and lifting our heads high, because our deliverer from this wicked world is near. We've been praying for his kingdom to come and heal the Nations,  so let it come.

    34 “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. 35 For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth. 36 Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.-  Luke 21:34

    I am on the watch, It is not an unexpected trap for me. Violence was prophesied; violence in the streets will occur.

     Pray that we have another Red Sea moment, so we can escape the violence that will be directed against us. It will come

    Did it ever occur to you that deep down that there is something that desires the prophesies to be true for then this will be affirmation of your faith.  Because what happens if these prophesies do not come true?  What are the implications of that?

    Because what happens if these prophesies do not come true?  What are the implications of that?

    I've seen many of the prophesies already fulfilled; so I have no doubt in their truthfulness.

    12 The prudent see danger and take refuge,
       but the simple keep going and pay the penalty.

    Proverbs 27:1-27 New International Version (NIV)


    On the other hand, the prophesies also state; that the many who ignored the coming calamity, end up as carrion, to be picked over by the  birds, ending up as manure on the field. 

     10For yet a little while and the wicked shall not be; yea, thou shalt diligently look for his place, and it shall not be.    
     11But the meek shall inherit the earth, and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.

    Psalm 37:10-11 21st Century King James Version (KJ21) 

    The implications would be that fallible human interpretation had not accurately distilled the essence of the prophecy.

    I don't think of the tirades as "predictions." When the future necessarily leads to an outcome perceived through conviction, the prophecy is not a hypothesis that can be proven to be correct or incorrect but a telescope that reveals the events have already happened as described.

    What I find most irksome in the rhetoric is the unalloyed nihilism it embraces; especially when it is combined with calls for a "progressive" polity. The contradiction between the perspectives is so complete that I wonder if the comments are disingenuous or an experiment of some kind.

    The naysayers who have never studied the Bible, wont know, nor do they care to know, because they wish to remain ignorant of prophesied events.

    Whether it was Pharaohs dream of 7 years of plenty and 7 years of great famine throughout Egypt; the naysayers will scoff at any recorded history.

    Except the God of TRUE Prophesy provided an even more dramatic display of his great power and his ability to prove it; through prophecy.  

    About 200  years before an event were to occur, the God of TRUE prophecy, foretold of the end Babylonian rule.

    The prophesy foretold the Great city Babylon would fall in one night, it also told the name  of the conqueror as Cyrus; and how he would conquer the city; bringing and end to a World power.  

    The prophesy foretold how the citizens boasted "who could bring them to ruin because the mighty river and the heavy door would  protect them"

    The city did fall  in one night; an event that was was foretold and recorded, written down  almost 200 years before Cyrus was born. 

    The God of True prophesy, decides who'll be a ruler to serve the Universal Sovereigns purpose.

    The man Cyrus, was chosen at that time period, to be the servant for the purpose of the MOST HIGH.

    To those who wish to be ignorant, even 200 years before an event, will never satisfy willful ignorance, because no matter what the proof, it will be ignored.

    God isn't going to fix the willfully ignorant, they will just have to suffer because that was their choice, they were forewarned of the calamity; what to look for so as to know the time and the events. Listen, observe and escape  or ignore and perish.  

    Your choice; Eternal life or death .

    Is it nihilism to admit a fact; man has and will continue to kill others and continues to ruin the Earth for all it's inhabitants, despite all the warning signs.

    Unless a higher authority; the Universal sovereign steps in to protect the meek  "No flesh would be saved" ? 

    New Living Translation (©2007)
    In fact, unless that time of calamity is shortened, not a single person will survive. But it will be shortened for the sake of God's chosen ones. Matthew 24:22

    The meek that will inherit an Earth; free from those would continue to kill and ruin if not stopped.




    Is it Nihilism to think? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Risks_to_civilization,_humans_and_planet_Earth


    The nihilism, the nothingness of your certainty that this world will be destroyed in the fashion you describe is that you are left to wait for that destruction, like a patient reading a magazine in the lobby of a dentist office. Your nom de plume should be Complicity instead of Resistance.

    All that is admirable in myself and those I see and hear struggles against that destruction with body, heart, and soul. You say no to all that I love.

    So you cry for the wicked ?

    As the day draws nearer, the wicked will have no mercy upon the weak.

    Listening and following the occupy movement proves to me, those in power don't care and they will not step up and do the RIGHT THING and defend the helpless.

    If they wont do it............The weak and the helpless does  have a defender, who will destroy those who don't care about yours or anybody elses .......  body, heart and soul.

    So you say no to all I love,

    ....the Planet and it's eco system,, the weak, the downtrodden and instead; ....you cry for the wicked, because they are going to be removed ?  

    ps  The Earth was never going to be destroyed, it is going to be inherited and inhabited by the meek who will transform the entire Earth, into an enlarged Garden of Eden

    Just as the original plan was,.... it will be  

    I would have to accept your premise that we are all going to be tested by a God who didn't give a fig about what I loved to agree that I somehow cry for the wicked. The people I care about are beautiful and filled with goodness. If that love means nothing to you then we are not facing each other across a shared table. You must have a special status that permits you to speak from on high. To hell with that sort of thing.

    Actually, I'm pretty sure all achieving such special status really requires is opening your heart, FWIW.

    While this is really odd rhetoric to employ on site populated almost entirely by the religiously atheist, I think you are missing the general thrust here. Whatever it was that you are "crying for" is laid out in the comments upthread ... not based on clairvoyant abilities or conclusions being drawn about goodness seen in your family and close friends (it's pretty difficult to go by much of anything else considering the communication format here).

    What you are misinterpeting as nihilism I think is nowhere near that. As such, choosing to attack this vision means something very different to you than it does to Resistance (although, I get where you are coming from too). Honestly, I'm really surprised you guys aren't more hostile to Zen ... they'd say don't even bother trying to get yourself out of the way; if you get squashed, well, it was a learning experience for the next life. Not necessarily nihilist ... but seemingly anti-Darwinist.

    In any case, the events he sees as inevitable are a doing away of the arrogant and the predatory and ascendance of the meek. Typically this is actually a message that is at least paid lip-service to by "the left". If you are fighting against that with every fiber of your being, your position is ultimately one of empowering and sustaining the current status quo. And I don't give a damn if you believe in fucking Zeus, things are pretty wicked at this point ... so it seems pretty difficult to give R shit for characterizing it as such.

    You aren't facing each other across a shared table- this is true - but, it doesn't really seem as if you have any desire to unless your table-mate is willing to see the world from exactly the same perspective you do.


     I am not supporting the status quo by resisting the notion that everything has to become apocalyptic for anything to happen at all. Maybe it does and I am a foolish man, filled with illusion. But my challenge to R is not based upon his characterization of the gravity of our present situation. I understand the logic that requires his conclusion but his argument is based only upon the authority he cites. Arguments based upon authority are the weakest kind. The humility you promote in your opening paragraph is lacking in his presentation.

    What Resistance is saying goes far beyond your recapitulation of his thought. He says this: The destruction of this world as we know it is required to bring about real change. I have an idea of what that looks like in real time. It sucks big time for me and mine. That is my table to be shared or not.

    What is your interpretation of nihilism? How have I misrepresented the idea?



    And what would you say to those for whom the world as we know it currently sucks big time for them and theirs ... desperate for the current system to be swept away and replaced by an approach that also accounts for their needs?

    "This table's taken ... I've got mine, so fuck off."

    If that's your attitude ... don't be surprised if the desperate appear at your door and just take the food off of your table. Everyone's gotta eat.

    How do you envision real change occurring without a substantial enough shift in the system as we know it to pretty much be characterized as it's destruction? Certainly our global financial system as it exists is untenable. It is not possible to wish that away; math is math ... and the folks with a death-grip on the levers clearly aren't going to change course until this thing crashes completely no matter what anyone says.  Considering the world has now defined itself almost exclusively in terms of this system - whether a result apocalyptic prediction or simple math and inertia - the destruction of the world as we know it seems somewhat inevitable.

    I don't find it surprising that someone of faith would look at the current snowballing situation and draw strong parallels to predictions in scripture. I think you are far too caught up on that part and not giving nearly enough credence to the exhortations that you take steps now so that you and yours are well positioned to weather the storm. It is clearly on the horizon ... if you are relying on the status quo for the well being of your family; you are truly living in a house built upon the sand (to crib a bible phrase).

    Honestly, if you can get past the rhetorical style that is likely an affront to your own preferred religious rhetoric ... his advice isn't too far off from James Kwak.

    And what would I say to those for whom the world as we know it currently sucks big time?

    Oh wait. I'm sure that's not the right answer.

    James Kwak... hahaha, surely you jest, his rhetoric is more like Harold Campings, so sure of his righteousness, that even when the vast prediction machine is wrong, he insists he is right. James Kwak indeed.

    My attitude is not expressed through the saying "I've got mine, so fuck off". You are advancing against an undefended position. The people I have encountered who exemplify the opposite of that attitude don't consider their efforts meaningless when measured against a larger calamity.

    Your account of how far I (or anybody) would have to go to not support the status quo is remarkably similar to Lenin's argument for the need of a catastrophic break in the continuum for a different way of life to get started. However correct Lenin may be or not be in this matter, using that narrative as a way to understand apocalyptic thinking is supremely ironic. Marx said that what we attribute to God is that part of Man we refuse to accept responsibility for.

    That notion is very far from the scene of judgment R is preparing for. Saying that we must be devoured by the wicked so that God can sort out who should be saved is not a euphemism for an historical process. When the promulgators of that idea imagine they are already in the winners circle, the pompoms they shake for their team celebrates the ultimate status quo.

    I take your point about my use of the word nihilism. I should have just said flaccid disengagement from all that he encounters in the flesh.

    My attitude is not expressed through the saying "I've got mine, so fuck off". You are advancing against an undefended position.

    No it may not be your exact expression; but it is certainly others perception of your position.

    My reply to your other lies ....... below

    Oh yeah .... fergot.

    Nihilism (play /ˈn.ɨlɪzəm/ or /ˈn.ɨlɪzəm/; from the Latin nihil, nothing) is the philosophical doctrine suggesting the negation of one or more putatively meaningful aspects of life. Most commonly, nihilism is presented in the form of existential nihilism which argues that life is without objective meaning, purpose, or intrinsic value.[1]Moral nihilists assert that morality does not inherently exist, and that any established moral values are abstractly contrived. Nihilism can also take epistemological, metaphysical, or ontological forms, meaning respectively that, in some aspect, knowledge is not possible, or that contrary to popular belief, some aspect of reality does not exist as such.

    The term nihilism is sometimes used in association with anomie to explain the general mood of despair at a perceived pointlessness of existence that one may develop upon realizing there are no necessary norms, rules, or laws.[2] Movements such as Futurism and deconstruction,[3] among others, have been identified by commentators as "nihilistic" at various times in various contexts.

    Now, really, based on comment history does that better describe someone like Another Trope (et. al) or Resistance? In many ways Nihilism almost seems to be the antithesis of faith.


    So based on this thread I am a reactionary nihilist, or a nihilistic reactionary when the moon is full.  Interesting. 

    Oh, and I would suggest you avoid attempting to characterize Zen in the future.  It is obviously something you have little grasp of.

    when it is combined with calls for a "progressive" polity. The contradiction between the perspectives is so complete that I wonder if the comments are disingenuous or an experiment of some kind.

    "progressive" polity.?

    It would be helpful if you defined that term.

    If I understand it correctly; would progressive polity have commonality with Christian precepts?

    If their were an experiment it would be to show the disingenuous of so called false prophets, who mock TRUE prophecy and tickle peoples ears,  telling others to ignore talk of gloom.  

    "Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit?

    Tell me Moat; how do you propose to stop the event the prophecy foretells?

    Instead of looking back through your telescope Moat; show us YOUR workable plan or way to a better future.

    Are the Nations leaders going to reach an accord on saving the planet, from ecological disaster?

    The prophecies say NO, they won’t.  

    Are the nations going to lay down their weapons and war will be no more?  The prophecies say NO; they won’t stop the Wars. 

    Share with us your plans, let others mock you, as you do the True Prophets;  who were not blind but instead; they guide our steps into a bright future beyond the impending doom caused by wicked men. 

    Progress is the thought that people can change the world into a better place through conscious choice and action. Taking responsibility for our own lives starts with not looking for somebody else to do that in our place. As a Christian, that is where the teaching starts for me.

    All of your rhetorical questions about whether I have an answer to problems I don't share with you demonstrates the insularity of your thought more than any rebuttal I could conjure. You are not here. You have no skin in the game.

    In what regard would you say pictures often lie? In my opinion, a picture simply is - only an observer can lie (or misinterpret). I agree that many pictures are crafted with an apparent objective of leading an inattentive observer to misinterpretation, but I don't see that as the same thing exactly.

    This is really apropos of absolutely nothing ... I don't know diddly/sqat about art; just find the thought interesting.

    If you are really really rushed for time,this from AA's Dallas cop:

    ....Departments and officers must remember the we (the police) only serve at the allowance/discretion of the citizenry who employs us.  If we fail to treat everyone as we would have ourselves and families treated then we cease protecting and serving and begin preying and harming.  I personally appreciated your logical stipulations and from a law enforcement veteran's perspective I can see no legitimate basis for the actions that those few officers took either....

    Yeah, it's a good piece.

    But then, as everyone is focusing on the pepper spray incident, that's involving campus police, not Officer Geron's compadres. I'm not one who ever expected professionalism from campus police. Perhaps I have uniformed prejudices from my college days eons ago, but I thought the general opinion of campus police is that their skill set was only a teeny bit above that of the rent-a-cop at the local supermarket. And the pay and benefits are probably below prison guard level, given that the job is not too life threatening?

    The pepper spray story simply reminds me of the crack set of sex crime investigators and independent detective minds over at the police station at the University of Pennsylvania.

    Ok, I'll just say my opinion after reading all this stuff. Whoever trains them needs to be fired, the ones that have disdain for students (whether protesting or not, remembering in loco parentis and presuming one's parents do not use pepper spray for discipline) need to be fired, and whoever gave the orders/permission or use pepper spray needs to be fired, that's what the story looks like to me. UC Davis needs a new police force, it's just that simple.

    But at the same time, campus police pepper spray abuse does not seem to be the purview of the DOJ or the U.S. president, sorry, for me it just doesn't. Maybe some major lawsuits (again, see Paterno story.)

    It's a different story from that of the city police forces and mayors, that's what's clear to me. And a warning for other campus police to get their act together, because many of the Occupier groups have announced intent to spend time at campuses and to encourage protests therein. And that their job is to protect and help the students, even more so than "real" policeman's job is to protect and serve the public. Because it's to be presumed that few enrolled students are the criminal elements that can be found in society at large, that they have already been screened for that possibility when they were accepted for enrollment.

    I disagree Art. The Feds are our teeth when it comes to civil rights.

    Whether it be dogs or police with batons, or pepper spray, on the school steps, no campus cop or for that matter any police officer should ever think they are not being watched and will know there is a higher law. 

    "On June 11, Malone and Hood arrived to register. Wallace, attempting to uphold his promise as well as for political show,[3] blocked the entrance to Foster Auditorium with the media watching. Then, flanked by federal marshals, Deputy Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach told Wallace to step aside.[1] However, Wallace cut Katzenbach off and refused, giving a speech on States' rights.[3] Katzenbach called President John F. Kennedy, who mobilized the Alabama National Guard. General Henry Graham then commanded Wallace to step aside, saying, "Sir, it is my sad duty to ask you to step aside under the orders of the President of the United States."


    Wouldn't it be nice to have a President today; willing to speak out and defend our rights?

    Officer, it is my sad duty to ask you to step back and put your pepper spray away, under the orders of the President of the United States.  

    Okay now outline exactly what the limits of pepper spray use is that the President would tell the police.  Is it only that which is approved by Mr. Resistance? 

    You see that is why it is difficult for the WH to get involved directly.  We are talking about a generally acceptable tactic - we are arguing over when it is appropriate and how to apply it when it is appropriate.  You know, nuanced stuff.

    1. person charging cop with axe  --  pepper spray acceptable tactic

    2. bear charging cop  --  pepper spray sorta, maybe, probably acceptable tactic


    event not previously mentioned  --  pepper spray not an acceptable tactic

    this would require a massive re-writting of local laws - laws created by local legislatures. I mean you didn't even mention someone in the midst of meth rage.  of course I might actually be taking the issue seriously.

    Hardly.  Now back to bed.

    To use pepper spray indiscriminately could be a death sentence to someone with a respiratory compromise  ie asthma.

    The police used an environmental hazard.

    I would use the same standards nationwide. Following the guidelines of "When can an individual use deadly force".

    Were the officers lives threatened?  NO 

    "the use of oleoresin capsicum (OC), or pepper spray, as a use-of-force option to subdue and control dangerous, combative, or violent subjects in the field."




    Personally, I definitely not an advocate of pepper spray.  But what we are talking about here is whether the President of the United States should get involved given the politics of law, local jurisdiction, etc. 

    What I would recommend is that if you feel strongly about its use, that you work on the local level to get your community to discontinue it use, or vastly curtail its use.  This would also have the added virtue of now depending on authority from the top of the chain to make changes, which apparently is bad thing.

    I thought the whole Democratic schtick was that one of the federal government's roles is to intervene if local policy and practice cross lines or create unreasonably dangerous situations for the citizens.

    So your premise is that while the EPA can regulate relatively harmless CO2, it would be totally inappropriate for a federal agency to address the availability and use of a chemical agent which routinely has measurable severe physical and mental health impacts on American citizens when it is forcibly introduced into their lungs and nasal passages by officers acting under government authority?

    Maybe the federal government should regulate pepper spray.  But this about Obama coming out now and making a statement.  So let's talk about our representatives in the Senate and the House doing something about pepper spray use.  Again, everyone is so against authoritarianism, but seem to want Obama to override the system and impose the law of land through the use of power as head of the country.  So authoritarianism isn't a problem if the power is used for good. 

    You've got a funny way of definitely not being an advocate of pepper spray.  Or other chemical weapons.  Or clubs.  Or rubber bullets.  How about sharing with us your thoughts on the practical use of high pressure hoses shot at the unarmed to maintain  "law and order?" 

    I'd love to read sometime about your opposition to these "generally accepted tactics," but I doubt it will be anytime soon.  You seem more than willing to defend the Ruling Class as it dispatches mercenaries to protect its perceived property and insatiable quest for power and control. 


    When have the police used high pressure hoses on protesters of the occupy movement? 

    Look, you disagree with the local authorities who want to stop the ability of people to set up tent cities under the name of some political agenda.  But the law allows them to break them up.  Don't like it, then get your people in the city and country councils, get your advocate into the mayor's office.  This is the side of things that is ignored by all the blather from the pro-occupy side because they know that such candidates don't necessarily have the support of the people.  Because, hey, who wants the anti-abortion tent city.  Or the anti-immigrant tent city.  Or maybe you don't have a problem with a pro-white power tent city?

    The WH seems to have no problem getting directly involved when he's telling other governments what limits are appropriate for their security forces. Isn't this guy supposed to be *our* leader?

    The simple fact is that if the President - the man we elected to lead and come up with answers - is unable to sort through the issues to establish actionable guidelines for the appropriate tactical deployment of a chemical agent; such chemical agents should not be deployed until the security forces have clearly defined lines that can be definitively judged by all observers - from the layman to the president.

    Same goes for rubber bullets, bean bags, tazers and all those other police-state toys that currently are just handed to officers on the ground who are then forced to establish ad-hoc policies on a case-by-case basis in incredibly tense situations. The lack of standardized expectation creates an untenable and unsafe situation - both for the officers and the citizens they ostensibly serve.

    Of course when they do talk among themselves they are accused of conspiring as seen on this thread.  The problem is that the police forces are not being coordinated for the occupy agenda, but upholding the laws and being directed by those in power.  

    So here's an idea: why don't the occupy people run for office. Then the police will be operating under their orders. 

    That's not an idea, it's a spit in the face.  You should be ashamed of yourself for writing it.

    I should be ashamed for suggesting that those who are aligned with the Occupy movement participate aggressively in our democracy?  WTF?  

    Trope, try this mind experiment if you can find the equipment for it somewhere handy. Suppose you had a legitimate offer of a billion dollars, or any other kind of payoff that was significantly meaningful to you, to be paid fifteen years from now, or as soon as you were successful, if by then you had been able to reach a high enough elected office at either state or national level that you had been instrumental in getting one piece of effective progressive legislation passed. What are the chances that you would collect? Your combination of brains, education, and experience, gives you such an advantage over the OWS crowd that if any of them can do it you surely should be able to.  I'd like an honest answer that demonstrates why that suggestion you made was not a "spit in the face", but I expect to hear your regular line of Trope-a-Dope bs.

    Given my "skeltons in the closet" there is no way I can ever make city council let alone to a position where I could make decisions worthy of a huge payoff.  Unfortunately, people want their politicians to be angels, not someone who actually inhaled.  Alot.

    "Those who do not move, do not notice their chains" Rosa Luxemburg.

    I'm not one who ever expected professionalism from campus police.

    If this is really the case, then these forces should not be given the same tactical tools and powers that are given to the forces which society expects to act professionally. Giving someone we know in advance to be unprofessional an industrial-sized can of pepper-spray and turning them loose on a group of students becomes an act of gross negligence.

    But since these officers are so deputized, equipped and empowered by law, they clearly fall under the same rubric as that of any police force so empowered - just as the city police forces led by mayors. We have no choice but to hold them to the same standards, if not higher, and to employ the same legal and policy tools used in addressing systemic problems as with any police force. If the DOJ/President is appropriately empowered to address systemic issues found within the police force of a city (or state) ... they are equally empowered to address systemic issues found within campus police forces as well.

    Failure to address national standards, expectations and limitations on police officers in a way that applies consistently to all forces across the board fails to provide equal protection to all citizens under the law and carves out pools of potential systemic police lawlessness.

    You are simply dead wrong on this.


    There seem to be two views in law enforcement. The one you highlight is similar to views expressed here.

    In the police academy, I was taught to pepper-spray people for non-compliance. Ie: “Put your hands behind your back or I’ll… mace you.” It’s crazy. Of course we didn’t do it this way, the way we were taught. Baltimore police officers are too smart to start urban race riots based on some dumb-ass training.

    The problem is that those who are expressing these views are not active - and certainly not in charge. This is simply not currently the view that is driving the leadership and training in our deployed police forces.

    In order to give proper service, the Baltimore officers must routinely ignore their training. But when push comes to shove ... the people policy makers are turning to as consultants and trainers for their officers are the individuals who designed the fucked up approaches in the first place.

    For example.

    After reviewing the video, Kelly said he observed at least two cases of "active resistance" from protesters. In one instance, a woman pulls her arm back from an officer. In the second instance, a protester curls into a ball. Each of those actions could have warranted more force, including baton strikes and pressure-point techniques.

    "What I'm looking at is fairly standard police procedure," Kelly said.

    Charles Kelly is the specific individual who designed the Baltimore training program officers claim must be routinely ignored to aviod race riots. This guy is advising policy makers nationwide.

    The question we face as society is how to purge the officers like Charles Kelly from active duty - and dislodge them from ensconced positions at the ear of policy makers - and empower and promote those such as Max Geron.

    Until that happens, it would be disingenuous to hold Geron up as representative of the wider national security forces that are still subjected daily to training that instructs them to behave almost opposite of the approach articulated by Geron

    Trope. Yes, I criticize your appalling reactionary trash. That people have been sucked in by your nonsense somehow irks the shit out of me. You hated Wisconsin, hated Occupy, have argued consistently that nothing more could possibly be done by the Dems, you rant about the risk of violence form the kids and then when violence shows up, in the hands of the cops, you kiss. their. ass. 

    You have become someone who spews reactionary trash. 

    And yes, I criticize it. 

    Also, I find myself somehow personally offended when you drag in names like Foucault and Camus, people who actually had great, independent intelligences... and tether them to your own kid-bashing, pepper-spray-loving, artless ass.

    Gotta luv Trope's verbosity though, and his philosophical underpinnings seem more related to Limbaugh than Camus.

    Trope, above: .....what the limits of pepper spray use is that the President would tell the police.......We are talking about a generally acceptable tactic - we are arguing over when it is appropriate and how to apply it when it is appropriate.  You know, nuanced stuff.

    On Trope's Bystanders blog I gave a link for the published Oakland Police Policy on crowd control. I guess he didn't read it.  It was imposed under court order after use of force violations during anti-war protests in 2003. 

    The Bystanders blog was related to the recent OWS Oakland protests, and Scott Olsen, the veteran who had his skull fractured. 

    For the Trope, cop responsibilities are in the realm of 'nuance'. 

    For the Trope, there is no nuance on the protestor side, Bystander blog:

    Trope: When the first rocks and bottles were thrown, Olsen's decision to stand with the crowd means whether one likes it or not that he is part of them.

    Therefore, according to the Trope, Olsen is fair game for rubber bullets, concussion grenades, or flying canisters of tear gas.

    But what about the published public policy for cops, who are public employees? A non-nuanced line from the Oakland policy document,

    page 9:

    4. Direct Fired SIM may never be used indiscriminately against a crowd or group of persons, even if some members of the crowd or group are violent or disruptive...

    page 10:

    8. Members shall not discharge a Direct Fired SIM at a person’s head, neck, throat, face, left armpit, spine, kidneys or groin unless deadly force would be justified.

    No nuance about it, Trope seems to go out of his way to excuse cop violence with utter nonsense, and ludicrously lopsided scales of accountability.

    Actually I have read the Oakland policy and had a discussion here at dagblog about how it was related to the Oakland incident.  I have also stated that the officer who shot the round that injured Olsen was found to be in violation, along with others in decision-making roles, then appropriate consequences should be taken.

    Not to rehash the whole thing, but one of nuanced facets of the incident was that the officer in charge was within his authority to declare the protesters an unlawful assembly and could then order all people to disperse, which he did.  One can argue after the fact (as many of the protesters did at the time) that he was wrong in making that declaration at the time, but the fact remains he had the authority to do so and did.  And so on. 

    And in the action that unfolded, one could easily make the case that number 4 was violated, number 8 is another matter. 

    In the end, based on the rules which you link to, the protesters chose to confront the police over their authority to disperse the crowd.  Things got out of control.  There was things done on both sides which were done wrong.  If I was on a site where the general sentiment was the police could do no wrong, then I would probably be taking a different slant on things than on a site where the protesters are presented as innocent angels.  In other words, it is because the police are not given the nuance while the protesters are that I focus on the police side of the nuance angle.

    And a large facet of the point I am making is that many liberals out there don't see the police as just simply the violent thug enforcers of the repressive Fascist regime that is our government from the local to the federal level.  It is like saying that the DOJ investigations of police forces is all farce or evidence that they always have the people's back against local authorities.  Neither are true.

    Trope, did you forget the 'if'?

    I have also stated that (if?) the officer who shot the round that injured Olsen was found to be in violation...then appropriate consequences should be taken.

    No one said OWS were 'angels' or cops were 'demons', you are making stuff up, straw men to make your argument look better.

    As I pointed out to you on your 'This Just Proves My Point' blog, where you had a video of a OWS protestor being arrested in SF, (with no rubber bullets or pepper spray), I said that cops have:

    'a solemn responsibility not to abuse ... authority, to resolve an issue or solve the problem at hand without making things worse. No one gets hurt. The cops in SF did that, the cops in Oakland did not.'

    With all your words and all your pontificating Trope, your use of the SF video in that blog shows you don't get the basic truth, cops don't have a right to hurt people, to crack their skulls or spray capsicum pepper down their throats.

    The SF cops get it, you and the Oakland cops do not.

    Lets face it though you would have gone after Camus, like so many of Left did, when he took France's side against the Algerian liberation movement.  You wouldn't have been, 'oh you have such a great, independent intelligence.'

    Now you can call me reactionary, but it doesn't make it so.  What probably irks you is that can't understand how someone who agrees with you on where society needs to be in most part disagrees with you about how to get there. 

    You see I could call you reactionary, arguing that you support efforts that reinforce and facilitate the status quo, even a greater retrenchment, making political and social reforms less likely.  Now me, I want to see actual reform occur.  Lasting and sustainable reform.  And look at the events through that perspective, rather than a perspective of some romanticized idea of what change looks like.

    And rather than address that, you just call me reactionary and assume that settles the matter.

    And one last thing - in such cases of Oakland, the point is that the protesters had also brought violence to the table.  You and others, using a number of excuses, push that aside and call it irrelevant, to the point you make such farcical comments like it was only the police who brought the violence to the table.  Which only make you appear silly.

    Thing is, there isn't actually much evidence that you and Q agree on where society needs to be. Perhaps if you were to articulate what exactly these "long lasting reforms" you dream about would be comprised of in actual specific policy terms it would go a long way to lending credibility to this assertion.

    And let's be clear here. When you and your crew decided to "occupy" the forests of the NW, you brought with you a campaign of tree spikes and vandalism. By your standards ... we should have beaten the living shit out of your asses.

    Forresters are *still* at risk because of that ... and now that we've got this beetle infestation taking out the old-growth it would be really nice to be able to do some forest maintenance without having to worry about your mantraps. Thanks a whole hell of a lot. At least the OWS folks are violent against people who are also violent - you guys did it to the working man.

    You sure don't seem to want to address the violence of those who shared the movement that you lean on for credibility as a progressive. Pot ... meet kettle.

    When I was involved, we went out of our way to denounce the spikers.  They weren't on our side.  And we worked with the local law enforcement.  Never had a beating.  Some serious cussing on their part when they were sawing through the u-locks, but nothing violent on either side.

    There was some violence from some of the loggers, but actually most of them were cool with the protests off the record.  Most of the rage I experienced, now that I think about it, was from the Earth Firsters who were all pissed that we wouldn't support their extreme tactics.

    It is kind of like the day of action in Oakland, when thousands protested, shut down the port for the day.  All was well, a good time had by all (except for a few truckers and dock workers who took a wage hit), and no violence from the police.  The message was sent out, recorded by the media.  Them some couple hundred decided to take over some buildings, start some fires etc.  But because these couple hundred are supposively on the side of the good we cannot criticize them.  We cannot denounce them as we denounce police who step over the line.


    The pine beetle infestation is the result of global warming, kgb, as far as real science goes, which has little to do with anything you've mentioned, certainly has little to do with what Trope did  personally, good job introducing a red herring into the thread.  Unless Trope was  part of Earth First, he has nothing to do with tree spiking.. Forresters of course are not at risk of anything, although loggers might be.  No one has been hurt as a result of tree spikes since 1987, and the total of people injured by spikes, one. Another red herring.

    As for Q's infinite problems with Trope? Who knows, and really gives a rats ass.

    double post


    Trope, I'm not even sure that you're aware that all your blah-blah about how the OWS kids should have "denounced violence" shows just how reactionary you are. Because the thing is, when you're confronted with other incidents and types of violence, your principles melt away. 
    For example. I know a lot about the violence in the BC woods. But miraculously, you found a way to argue your hands were clean, by saying that Earth First had nothing to do with YOU. Even though you were stopping people from working, were chained to machinery and trees (that's private property, son), often for extended periods, thus wrecking peoples jobs, and even after being told to go by the cops (after all, otherwise, why the locks, eh?) And yet, compared to OWS kids occupying A PARK, chained to no one's working tools, and actively feeding the homeless - you feel superior.  
    Or the cops. If a cop gets caught on camera going berserk, you'll first argue they were provoked, and the OWS kids had been told to go home, etc etc. But only if the cops' violence was so extreme it can't be denied do you then argue that it was a single bad apple. It never affects the whole organization. Even when the specially-shirted supervisors and bosses walk directly up to women standing (remember that early incident) or lately, people sitting, and pepper sprayed them in the face, even then.... it's rogue cops. Or they somehow deserved it. But what you will not do is condemn the organizations, or condemn all cops in the group. 
    But with the OWS kids? Just for using the word Revolution, you damned them. Right from the start, you were on their asses, going on about how they had no clue, they used big bad words, they should go home, they had no solutions, they had no leaders, they'd stayed too long, people didn't like them, someone scary was seen at a site, they'd accomplished their aims. And at the end, when all the conflicts came, it was their fault. 
    You did the same with Wisconsin. I remain your whining about their benefits and what the middle classes thought and such. 
    But do you denounce the corporate bosses you invite to your table to help the poor? These guys, the powers that be, express violence everyday. When people are thrown out of their houses or thrown out of work or have their savings stolen or their water poisoned or their tax money spent to kill foreigners somewhere overseas. But to you, the man of mighty standards, this washes by. Or are they all fabulous employers, meeting all the standards and regulations, treating people fairly, paying their full quantum of taxes? Piffle.
    You've rendered your "principles" worthless, and you're pissing away the value and the virtue of your own early life. I told you early on I thought this was tragic, and suggested you take a step back to consider the way you were jumping in, so loudly, so frequently, and so incredibly anti- the OWS kids. But it seems that for you, this has become an opportunity to move another step to the Right - and blow harder.
    As for me and my views on all this, I've been quite clear - and hopefully not too loud - from Day One. I don't think it's going to immediately and directly result in any grand Revolution. I think it will wrap up sometime, and be seen as a wave, a step, a stage. I think eventually we need all sorts of ideas and practical thoughts. Eventually. But I think it's great that they're there. 
    And no, I don't much like the violent handfuls of people out there, but. BUT. Violence is going on all through our society right now, and if you think this is the violence to be worried about, then you are a fool, or a hypocrite. Just to compare it with your fave cops, go to YouTube and look at the videos of the incredible, blinding, out-of-the-blue violence which the Denver cops visit upon people. Detroit. Oakland. New York City. Then just COMPARE it to OWS. 
    And then sit down with a pencil and a sheet of paper, and draw a little house for every family thrown out into the cold... and a little hunched over worker for every one made unemployed...  and a sad little old person for every retiree ripped off. Just draw them, each one, each figure.
    A few million times each. 
    And then remember that it's the very people sitting round your comfy table at work who are recording these record profits, who have record cash stashes, who got bailed out, who hired specialists to avoid taxes, who shoved jobs offshore. 
    Maybe also go out into your back yard and make a little cross for every single Iraqis and Afghani killed in these wildly psychotically violent wars which your very own representatives have continued on. Maybe say a little prayer. Can you say that many prayers, Trope? After all, they were killed in YOUR name. Oh wait. What's that? You're not going to denounce those wars? Or the Commander in Chief? Of course you're not. 
    You see Trope, I don't believe in violent revolution. Or violent protest. Or even just smashing shit up. But the thing is, I'm also not so dumb as to imagine that's the serious violence going on today. Is it?

    I want to thank you and kgb for bringing your gifts to the table.

    It’s obvious to me, who really speaks from the heart in defense of the weak.

    I hope your good words find a fertile place in other people’s hearts as they have mine.  

    I look forward to hearing more of your perspectives and illustrations.

    Thanks again


    First off (and there is a lot to address here) - what's up with this "kids" thing with OWS.  Is that how you disregard their inappropriate behavior when it occurs.  Flickin' cigs at cops - hey, they're just kids. From the video I've seen, most of them are adults.  But I guess if one saw them as such, then the expectations would be different.

    And let's be clear here. The occupy movement strength is that they aren't like those who use things like representative democracy in a modern industrial state.  They aren't caught in the corruption and dysfunction that weaves itself through politics throughout the globe.  They are not about incrementalism.  They and you want people to join their movement because they offer a path away from the far from perfect system we have now. 

    As the Monty Python scene so brillantly showed, there is violence inherent in the system.  A system that evolved and unfolded over thousands of years.  Since people don't want to renounce the capitalistic system and become a nation of Buddhist monks, they want their jobs, they want capitalism only with a heart, they also have to accept the way such a system works in the world. 

    And there is a place for those who protest the dynamics of this system.  I am all for that.  The difference is that I see that not all protests are created equal.  Some are effective, some not so much, and others are actually detrimental to one's stated objectives.  You think if the kids plaster occupy on their t-shirts, no matter what they do is off-limits to criticism.  Those who do criticize are reactionaries. 

    In all my time in Clayoquot and the Walbran, there was no physical violence.  With all the lock downs there was no damage to private property.  In preparation for the Clayoquot Summer, the forces that wanted to make damaging machinery (sugar in the gas tanks, etc) were voted down and many of them did not participate.

    And I have never said that work stoppage for an hour or a day is inherently a bad thing - maybe not the best PR move at times.  And the PR thing is critical if what you want to expand one's choir.  Had the Oakland day of action stopped as the sun went down, it would have been a grand action.  The police showed no brutality.  The people got to hang their banners for the media.  A good time had by all.  It was the actions of those afterward that screwed it up for everyone else.

    But in the end the question is if one really wants to create a society in which people are not thrown out into the cold - is sitting up some tents in a public square the answer in nation of over 300 million people?  Is this the path to deal with our foreign policy?  Is this the way to deal with the real kids who live in poverty and struggle with their academics?

    I would say no.  Did it get the income disparity into the media narrative? yes.  I have said that.  Bravo.  As a path to deal with the entrenched problems of our society, including the very violence inherent in our cultural imperatives? No.  In fact it has only reinforced the George W Bush paradigm of either you are with us or you are against us.

    Or maybe you can demonstrate how it will.  That would be enlightening.  Or should I have some kind of Resistance-like faith?

    My time working in activism and protests brought me to a point where I saw that there was place and time for it.  And when the time called for it, a way to do it.  It was not the answer to all things.  Unlike you, I haven't romanticized it, as your constant reference to "kids" indicates your lock into the blurry memory of the 60's protests.

    Saying that we must be devoured by the wicked so that God can sort out who should be saved is not a euphemism for an historical process.


    I’ve never said or implied that.

    No Moat we didn’t have to be devoured by the wicked. The wicked are here because mankind; people like Moat , who cry for the wicked, allowed it.

    The only reason God has to intervene, is because mankind alone can’t stop the wicked from devouring everything.

    It’ll take an army to dislodge the wicked, …..an angelic army.


    The Bible is noteworthy because it is a record of over 6000 years of mankind.

    Who cares if you don’t like what you read, its Mankind’s record. Mankind is judged on its record.

    A short history of mankind’s attempts to rule themselves.

    I’ll start with Nimrod the hunter of men. Wicked

    Hebrew slaves under harsh Egyptian rule: Wicked

    And many more examples of how the wicked would prosper, if they had not been contained.

    It’s obvious,  you still cry for the wicked, you don’t think God should intervene and when he does, you impugn bad motives on him.

    You cry and spread more lies, when he saves those who can't save themselves, from the hands of the strongly entrenched wicked.


    You were asked before to make life better for the weak and the downtrodden.

    Now almighty Moat; Tell us your plan.

    Tell all of us that are being oppressed now by the wicked, to wait ….. Those of you homeless, hungry and sick; Moats ideas of help is on the way.

     Heres your opportunity Moat;  TELL US YOUR  LIFESAVING PLAN.

    (Be sure to include in your plans, those who are suffering now, Earthwide. I don't want you to pick the winners and the losers )

    When the promulgators of that idea imagine they are already in the winners circle, the pompoms they shake for their team celebrates the ultimate status quo.

    My perception of Moats conversation with God

    Moat: “God, don’t you dare intervene, it’s not your place. Mankind will take care of their own; we don’t need you to pick the winners and the losers.  

    Moat the angelic commander will  be looking to see which side you’re on. Will you still be accepting your responsibility, for keeping the downtrodden enslaved with your holier than thou ideas or plans? Will the Angels sent to help the downtrodden, find; you're still waving your pompoms for the opposer and the oppressors?


    Come on...angelic army.  You're on the road to fanaticism if not already there. 

    One of the moments of my activist days that will always be with me was when we were taking on animal experimentation on our campus (an issue not addressed very often I noticed here or elsewhere).  I was talking with a psychology professor who made waves by making the decision not to use animals in his experiments.  He concluded our conversation by saying "remember you are on the side of the angels."

    I have to admit it made me feel good to hear this.  But what did it mean, really?  Was I without sin?  Could I not have all the answers?  Maybe we were right in our specific quest to stop the specific experimentation on our specific campus.  That isn't the point. 

    The point is that in each moment, we need to find what resonates with our soul.  We need to both have the conviction of that resonance, and to hold at the same time the doubt we might be wrong.  It is what Rollo May called the real courage of our convictions. 

    Come on...angelic army.  You're on the road to fanaticism if not already there. 

    You see that is  the problem with you Trope, your arrogance. 

    You make brash comments about fanaticism, on subjects you know so little about.

    But not humble enough to shutting up and learning.

    The history books are full of comments by fools and those who follow them; who think they know everything there is to know about everything .

    I'll even bet you'd have been included among those who thought the planets revolved around the Earth?

    I suspect generations that followed, even laughed at the inventors of the microscope.

    I could imagine your counterparts of yesteryear scoffing saying "The man is fanatical, he thinks there are things, unseen making us sick" .

    Thank God;   REALLY THANK GOD,  people didn't listen to the idiots or we wouldn't have the studies of microbiology. and advances in saving lives.  

    Those pioneers did a lot in the service of mankind talking and explaining of things unseen.

    For an individual to be called a fanatic,when rendering a sacred service, in the saving of lives, comes with the territory. The fools are eventually proven wrong.

    Well, I currently support those pushing string theory - so what does make me? 

    Remember, and this is very very important - it is not that one is rendering a sacred service, but whether the person who renders the service does so with the humility that he or she is merely human and not some soldier in god's army.

    Again you  make no sense.

    The war is not mine to fight. We are only servants to the king, as Ambassadors bearing a message from him.  The invitation to "come and drink lifes water, free" 

    so one moment you are against authoritarianism and the next moment we are just servants to the king.  In other words, we need not heed the authority unless it is the authority you deem to be worthy of subservience, and then our subservience should be absolute.

    Are you a fool?  No one is free.

    so one moment you are against authoritarianism and the next moment we are just servants

    Could you provide an exact quote from me where I was against the superior authority.

    It seems your being obtuse again.

    My authority has never lied, and his sworn oath is good enough for me.

    Your problem is, your authority cant and wont deliver as promised.  

    Your authority brings forth laws then ignores them.

    I will always obey the SUPERIOR authority, unless it is contrary to Gods laws.

    Even the police are under obligation to obey the SUPERIOR authority.

    you quote me:

    that society functions by following orders from superiors starting with our parents - and while never excuse - it is also the way it is,

    It is the reason society is DYSFUNCTIONAL,

    So what you are saying is that you are all for authority as long as it the superiority authority, and you have know which that authority is. 

    And the reason our society is in the crisis isn't that it is following an authority, it is that isn't following the true authority.

    In other words - you are all 100% behind a single authority ruling society.  As long it follows God's law.  Which of course is based on the interpretation of man - who is prone to error.  

    You said it yourself

    As long it follows God's law.  Which of course is based on the interpretation of man - who is prone to error.  

    You stifle the dissenters of  "mans interpretation"

    With a broad bush you condemn all Christian;  because of wicked men who high jacked TRUE Christianity years ago, to serve the wickedest agenda.

    What do they care if people reject Christian values? They still enrich themselves

    What do they care, if they can fleece the Christian flock and still enrich themselves.

    Mans interpretations can be proven false from Gods own words, if one was really inclined to look, unless of course if they were benefiting from mans interpretation..

     Which of course is based on the interpretation of man - who is prone to error.  

    The error is by those, who listen to the false prophets.

    Mankind was warned, that there would be those who would sneak into the congregations and mislead many.

    Is it any different with a the political system when liars and those who ignore the laws take control? 

    Would you get out the books and say SEE it says here, this is what you are supposed to follow or your not telling the TRUTH of what the law says.  

    How do you know the law,  if you dont open the law book?

    The question is - do you have any doubt that you have opened the wrong law book, or opening the right one not read it correctly?  That others who have read the same law book as you and interpreted it differently may be right and not just heretics?

    "The only reason God has to intervene, is because mankind alone can’t stop the wicked from devouring everything."

    I can't see how that expression differs in any way from the version I put forward. We seem to agree about what you are trying to say.

    Exactly.  What we all must struggle against, religious or otherwise, is creating the "wicked" force outside ourselves to explain what happening. We are the oppressors and the oppressed.  Nothing more and nothing less.


    just the kind of response one would expect


    This conversation hijacked a major portion of this post. My last reply to you is not based upon the hope that nobody has trudged through my words penned above. On the contrary.

    I am not hiding anything. I have revealed more about myself than I wanted to in this conversation. I am not a pig you have wasted time upon with your pearls.

    From Destor

    Obama's silence about police violence isn't helping the cause.

    It's not just Obama silence, it's everyones silence .

    IMHO, if  Christian values had been in the forefront of a valueless society; other than material gain; there would not have been NO  need for the OWS or pepper spray

    The silence on Christian values, is because those values are being suppressed ("by the  people" who mock Religious values)  ("for the people"  who have no religious values).

    So what we have now  is a government ("of the people" with no values) other than material riches.

    All because of silence. "Be silent we don't need these pillars".     

    The peoples silence tears down the pillars WE THE PEOPLE NEED.

    "Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports.........who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. ........It is substantially true that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government. The rule, indeed, extends with more or less force to every species of free government. Who that is a sincere friend to it can look with indifference upon attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric? George Washington


    If the OWS crowd could get the Churches to speak up, then you've got a strong pillar for change to be built upon.

    But all I seem to get from you, trope and others is your attacks on the very pillar we need to get the changes we want. 

    Read my blog

    The Prize Upon Which We Keep Our Eyes

    to understand why getting the churches involved in the Occupy movement is so problematic.


    I can't see how that expression differs

    You cant see because your blind.

    Even kgb tried to help you see, but you refuse to listen and discern.

    The words you quoted were from my reply to kgb. He has not replied to that comment so we don't know what he would make of my comparison of our sentences, namely;

    M: "Saying that we must be devoured by the wicked so that God can sort out who should be saved is not a euphemism for an historical process."

    R: "The only reason God has to intervene, is because mankind alone can’t stop the wicked from devouring everything."

    I would certainly like to hear what kgb thought on the matter but what is wrong with you? They are your words after all. Are you wishing to say that the judgment is an historical process?

    In regards to the discussion of how much mankind can help himself, haven't I accurately represented your often repeated claim that we are helpless in the face of the wicked?

    Comparing the two, I do see a difference

    You were speaking of me, “saying”   to which I say, NO I never did.   

    Your statement first

    M: "Saying that we must be devoured by the wicked so that God can sort out who should be saved is not a euphemism for an historical process."

    You impugn God.

    You imply he’s the cause.  WE MUST BE devoured by the wicked. SO THAT HE  can then become the Savior.

    You imply that God posited the scenario, so God through his scheming, would sort out who should be saved, because your comment suggests a rigged system.

    Whereas; my comment,  gives a more accurate description of Gods love,  and puts the blame squarely on wicked men, for the devouring of the weak.

    It didn’t have to be so.   

    Since the fall of Jerusalem in 607 BCE,  at the hands of the Babylonians. God has not had a physical Nation with one of his own appointed kings.  ie King David, Solomon

    When the exiled Jews returned to Jerusalem they were under the control of KINGS of the Nations  (Gentiles)  they have continued to live in what is called the appointed times.

    During this appointed time, man has had every opportunity to do what is right for all of mankind, absent God.

    Isn’t that what the Nations wanted all along ? They were telling God, quit interfering in mans affairs.

    Even at the time of Jesus death, still within the appointed times, the Nation of Jews said they had no king but Caesar.  

    Instead of mankind proving to God, during this appointed times of the Nations, could they say “See we didn’t need you anyway, we’ve done just as well as you ever did.

    What is the proof?  The wicked have become more deeply entrenched and the weak are being devoured.

    The appointed times of mans folly, is just about up.

    When YOU say  “WE MUST”  be devoured because that’s Gods plan, that’s a lie.

    Mankind alone CAN”T can’t solve mankind’s problems. If man could, why are we still plagued with so much violence and hunger?  

    Mankind, is injuring mankind; not GOD. Why is that?

    I asked you earlier, what is your plan, those other countless kings and rulers of the Nations haven’t tried, during this appointed time, that would produce good results, absent God.

    My words ARE different than yours

    R: "The only reason God has to intervene, is because mankind alone can’t stop the wicked from devouring everything."

    Mankind had every opportunity, to prevent the wicked from devouring, it failed and the people still suffer.

    The appointed times are near there end.

    Now the oppressed, the weak and the downtrodden will no longer have to listen to empty promises;  they will soon have a Savior deliver them from the wicked.   

    This reply is a marked improvement upon your previous efforts to castigate me as the spawn of Satan. I appreciate your effort to try something else.

    I take your point that my version has God setting the whole problem up for his own purposes whereas your version has him stepping into a problem he never wished for. Leaving that theological minefield to the side, does this difference mean I have misrepresented your statements declaring that our generation is incapable of addressing the calamity you are waiting to happen? On that point, I thought I was repeating you word for word.

     “declaring that our generation is incapable of addressing the calamity you are waiting to happen”

    What calamity are you saying “I am waiting to happen”?

    What calamity are you speaking of? Colony collapse, financial meltdown, nuclear accidents, genocide? What calamity do you think mankind will stop from occurring?   

    If our generation was capable or mankind has that power; why haven't they done something before, it's too late.

    I don’t have to wait; the calamities have already happened or are happening, or will happen.

    You have waxed poetic about how much worse it will get.

    Leaving that element to the side, you haven't answered my question.

    What question?

    I am only looking for the savior to protect me, from mans incapability to save himself.

    I don't think I can save myself,  I don't think my neighbor can save me either. So I ask for Gods help.  

    Save yourself without Gods help, from any of the calamities I mentioned   if you can.

    Maybe your Superman? wink

    I recognize I am too weak and helpless against such formidable calamities. So I will humble myself, praying for help.

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