Ponder This:

Real public servants are free enterprising individuals who, inspired, embrace challenge, take risks, and create, sometimes big, and often, they create jobs in the process, all out of their ideas, and self initiative...

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Saturday, Post radio program.

My guest today was Richard Rider from the San Diego Tax Fighters' Group. He's a wealth of experience and information and true crusader for the taxpayers. It's a topic that can numb your brain or paralyse you with the sense of being powerless against the collective strength of government employee groups, their unions, and the politicians they help elect to 'negotiate' their contracts and pay raises.

I've been focused on the social conservative issues and thinking about how to establish the coalition of citizens we are not connected with, who are conservative, but vote lock step with the liberals. I haven't quite seen the way yet... I have an idea, but it's germinating. Talking with Richard helps see the possibilities. I think the most exciting idea for me came at the end, from a caller who asked Richard about whether or not we could force government agents to put any proposed pay raise to the people's vote, because the common practice for local governments is to vote themselves payraises and benefits with impunity. Richard's response, it's been done and it works, it's a good idea, and "Do it."
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Botched Paramilitary Police Raids: An Epidemic of "Isolated Incidents"

"If a widespread pattern of [knock-and-announce] violations were shown . . . there would be reason for grave concern." —Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, in Hudson v. Michigan, June 15, 2006. An interactive map of botched SWAT and paramilitary police raids, released in conjunction with the Cato policy paper "Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids," by Radley Balko. What does this map mean? How to use this map View Original Map and Database

Key

Death of an innocent. Death or injury of a police officer. Death of a nonviolent offender.
Raid on an innocent suspect. Other examples of paramilitary police excess. Unnecessary raids on doctors and sick people.
The proliferation of SWAT teams, police militarization, and the Drug War have given rise to a dramatic increase in the number of "no-knock" or "quick-knock" raids on suspected drug offenders. Because these raids are often conducted based on tips from notoriously unreliable confidential informants, police sometimes conduct SWAT-style raids on the wrong home, or on the homes of nonviolent, misdemeanor drug users. Such highly-volatile, overly confrontational tactics are bad enough when no one is hurt -- it's difficult to imagine the terror an innocent suspect or family faces when a SWAT team mistakenly breaks down their door in the middle of the night. But even more disturbing are the number of times such "wrong door" raids unnecessarily lead to the injury or death of suspects, bystanders, and police officers. Defenders of SWAT teams and paramilitary tactics say such incidents are isolated and rare. The map above aims to refute that notion.

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