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...

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Daily Bell - James Bovard on His Famous Libertarian Books, America's Failing Freedom and 'Why Life Is too Short to Drink Bad Beer'

I love this guy. He makes learning about liberty, the costs and impact of big government on the average citizen's life fun and easy to digest and incorporate into one's understanding and insight, and he distills the complexities of government policy, politics and power into easy to grasp ideas. And I love his principle about beer! The interview covers his works, how he got started, what inspired him, what epigrams are illustrated in each of the books reviewed here. For example, from his book, "Freedom in Chains: The Rise of the State and the Demise of the Citizen" (1999) ...
James Bovard: OK, more epigrams ... 
• The surest effect of exalting government is to make it easier for some people to drag others down.
 • The growth of government is like the spread of a dense jungle, and the average citizen can hack through less of it every year.
 • Trusting government nowadays means dividing humanity into two classes: those who can be trusted with power to run other people's lives, and those who cannot even be trusted to run their own lives.... My favorite quote in this interview, and one that makes him authentic and endearing to me, James Bovard: "Life is too short to drink bad beer," as a savvy commentator once said. click here to read the interview. It's wonderful.
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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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