Neutralizing Potential Resistance
Opinion: New Normal Series
There are a lot of guns in America – more than one per head of population, a number that is rising rapidly. At least 41% of Americans have access to a weapon and 98% of them are in civilian hands. The record year for purchases was 2019, with at least 28 million; that is, until 2020 when there were more than 40 million purchases. Interestingly, women now account for over 40% of gun owners, a figure that was 10-20% for decades.(1) The United States is the world leader in civilian gun ownership – second place belongs to India, with a mere 70 million firearms. As such, the US is responsible for 47% of global civilian firearms possession.(2)
Whilst it's true that the federal government has control of the heavy weaponry, a combination of handguns, shotguns and rifles totaling 393 million is still a significant arsenal (in the hands of the people) were it to be brought to bear on a specific adversary. A subsequent offering will deal with the Second Amendment in detail, focusing on regime efforts to gut it without actually repealing it; a favorite tactic where constitutional impediments are concerned. Here it is sufficient to note that much of the information about gun crime in America is willfully misrepresented and to provide evidence of same. The thrust of this essay is the other potential stumbling blocks on the road to autocracy – law enforcement and, to some extent, the military.
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A regime that wishes to inflict its will on a reluctant population must have a means of doing so. All states sees themselves as the only legitimate repository of legalized violence, with certain exceptions (which are delineated in legislation and common law). In countries where the population's right to bear arms has already been circumscribed or removed in its entirety (often in the aftermath of a frequently preventable mass shooting or two), on the basis that a good crisis should never be wasted, the imposition of regime tyranny is exponentially easier. Government agents pointing guns at the public still has to normalized – and the public has to be convinced that force might actually be deployed for it to be an effective deterrent in the first place - but this is usually an incremental process and recent experience has demonstrated that populations can become inured to previously unheard of indignities remarkably swiftly.
In those rare countries where a significant proportion of the citizenry is still armed, government tyranny can still proceed on the same basis as elsewhere, but only up to a point. In the end, any final push to outright subjugation of the populace has to overcome (or somehow sidestep) the probability of armed resistance. The danger doesn't only come from civilians, however. Those sworn to uphold the law are also a factor to be considered, especially if they still hold fast to their oath of office.
“In a free society, the police are guardians of democracy. The radical Left must destroy belief in these principles to establish an organization that will support the efforts of a totalitarian government and violate the rights of the public on behalf of the ruling elites.”(3)
And so, in the first instance, those who bear arms on behalf of the state – in all its various guises – need to be brought on board or cast out. In the US, this is a little more complicated that it might be elsewhere, due to the unique structure of the Republic and the far-sighted Founding Fathers, who clearly demonstrated a profound grasp of the limitations of the human condition, especially with regard to its capacity for autocracy. The federal government has control of the military and, despite there being no constitutional basis for federalized law enforcement (there would need to be an enumerated power for that and there isn't), there is a vast array of alphabet agencies that Congress has authorized, despite the complete absence of voter enthusiasm. But the states and local municipalities have authority over local policing.
The federal government has always been guilty of overreach, a state of affairs that was fully anticipated and which is nominally prevented by the Constitution; if, of course, it had any sway in the current day, which it largely doesn't. The delicate balance established in that document was disturbed as long ago as Washington's time with the creation of the first national bank and by the creation of a slew of legal doctrines that sought to give credibility to increasingly blatant attempts to undermine the power of the states and enhance the authority of Congress.
The subsequent founding of the Federal Reserve Bank and the imposition of a national income tax hastened the process and any vestigial fiscal responsibility on behalf of the feds was erased in two stages – the abandonment of the gold standard and the Nixon Shock of the 1970s. These developments removed any pretense that a US dollar was redeemable against a physical asset and ushered in an era, still with us today, where the dollar is an entirely fiat currency, backed by nothing except faith. Successive administrations found it impossible to keep their hands out of the cookie jar. The post 9/11 world, in particular, has witnessed a vast expansion of federal agencies and the creation of entirely new entities, such as the Department for Homeland Security (DHS) which, somewhat curiously, spends an inordinate amount of time surveilling US citizens rather than its enemies abroad. There are now well over 200,000 armed federal agents and more than 270 SWAT teams across at least 18 different agencies,with the FBI to the fore.(4)
The current junta or, more accurately, the permanent government bureaucracy and the current administration combined, do not seem overly concerned about these agencies. But they are definitely concerned with local law enforcement, by which I mean state troopers, county and municipal police departments and sheriff's offices. These number around 700,000 officers, none of which are under direct federal control.(5) In normal circumstances, there would be no valid reason for federal trepidation. There is no reason to suppose that local law enforcement are in league with extremist opponents of democracy.
The feds might, however, feel the need to tread carefully if their intention is to ensure that there is no opposition to a future campaign aimed at removing the rights of citizens and destroying the very democracy that the cops are sworn to defend. To that end, the federal government has been simultaneously cosying up to the locals and, especially more recently, demonizing, de-funding and demoralizing them in a sustained campaign to undermine their authority. These are the various tactics they have used.
Control of resources
The federalization of police forces has been ongoing for the past twenty five years or so. The federal government has been using tax dollars to militarize local police forces through the device of terrorism grants (via the DHS), with tactical equipment, drones, weaponry and military vehicles.(6) This is not to say that the DHS weren't arming themselves at the same time; they purchased 2.2 billion rounds of ammunition, acquired 2,700 armored personnel carriers, thousands of military vehicles and have more than 100,000 armed enforcement agents.(7) And they are far from being the only agency with substantial military resources.
Nonetheless, the post 9/11 world was one of plenty for all law enforcement. This was the 'carrot' phase of the operation, whereby the government sought to ingratiate themselves with local law enforcement. The terrorism grants to domestic law enforcement entities seem, at first flush, to be a somewhat curious aberration, given the fact that 9/11 wasn't claimed to be an example of domestic terrorism. Therefore, the case for establishing quasi-military local police departments is difficult to establish, especially in extremely rural areas, where the odds of a terrorist attack are vanishingly small.(8) However, anybody with the smarts to realize that yet another crisis was being leveraged for an ulterior motive was, presumably, also intelligent enough to realize that any criticism of the grants, no matter how well informed, would be declared treasonously unpatriotic and torched, along with the author of it.
But this DHS program was merely an augmentation of a process that had been ongoing since 1997. The Pentagon's 1033 Program, as it's known, channeled more than $7.4 million worth of rifles, kevlar vests, grenade launchers and military vehicles that were 'surplus' to federal requirements (but which looked suspiciously shiny and new) to 8,0000 separate law enforcement agencies, 'staties' and county/sheriff's departments included.(9) It didn't end there. Larger forces have also received helicopters, tanks and armored personnel carriers.
It doesn't take a genius to realize that, if you give people new toys, they're going to play with them. Neither is it a particular stretch to conclude that both programs serve to provide one more revenue stream for the military-industrial complex. Plus, if local police are given more money or equipment in the short term, they necessarily have more clout. They also need to spend it (or use the equipment). And then, when the initial funds are spent, there will be higher local taxes to pay for the shortfall. It's an established pattern and one that the federal government must be aware of.
The 'stick' phase began under the Obama/Biden administration (who else?), but it took until 2014 before a review was launched in the aftermath of racial unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, (10) when – according to the press – many Americans were shocked by the police being in possession of rifles and body armor. It's worth noting that Obama was halfway through his second term at that point and under no obligation to pander for votes, so one may assume that this was a course of action that was embarked upon with conviction.
And it was from this point onwards that the regime attitude towards police underwent a drastic sea change. This was the stage at which the Democrat federal government, when it was in power, sought to tag police institutionally racist. The Trump years were a departure from this theme, which was nonetheless kept alive by the mainstream media. Before I go on, it's worth putting that allegation to bed via an unfashionable method; the deployment of facts, rather than feelings. Because, as we know – facts don't care about feelings.
The myth of institutional racism
Long before the cancer that is Black Life Matters started influencing American political life, accusations of racist brutality on behalf of the police were taken as fact. Black people were popularly viewed as disproportionately victimised by police, although the case was never made in a convincing manner. If facts were wielded in defense of this proposition, they were either used in isolation or sans context. Any black person killed by police was a candidate for martyrdom and any white person killed by police was consigned to history or, at best, a few lines in the local press. So, what are the actual facts about police interactions with black people and, possibly more importantly, black people's role in violent crime in general?
Well, it's certainly true that black Americans get killed in American cities at a rate that is catastrophic – in 2018 that number was 7,407 out of 14,123 total homicides. Or, put another way, over half (52%). Police killed 990 people that year, 228 of whom were black (23%).(11) Black people make up 13% of the population. Naturally, leftist apologists like to seize on the fact that 23% is a bigger number than 13%. They are not so keen to acknowledge that 52% is a much bigger number than 13%, showing that black people kill people at a rate four times higher than pro rata. Neither are the race-baiting establishment keen to acknowledge that 93% of black homicides are committed by other black people.(12) It seems that black lives matter only when they are killed by police.
There are a few more facts that help to provide context. Firstly, these numbers hold up over decades. Using the Bureau of Justice's own figures, the same pattern is apparent between 1980 and 2008 – 52% of the homicides committed by 13% of the population.(13) Secondly, then, the natural corollary to this is that this slice of the population has much more contact with the police:
“...a black crime rate which is 2.5 times the white crime rate and rises to 10 times the white crime rate in many major cities obviously explains most or all Black-white disparities in terms of unpleasant encounters with the police.”(14)
How are these numbers not higher? Because of the police. While black people continued to kill other black people disproportionately, Chicago and New York demonstrated the way to reduce homicides. Between 1991 and 2011, murders in Chicago were reduced by 54%. Black Americans, while comprising only 29% of the population, still accounted for 75% of the victims and 71% of the offenders, but at least some lives were spared.(15)
These figures do not scream 'police racism'. They show, incontrovertibly, that black communities in America have a huge problem with their own kind, not the police. This is not a fact that the liberal establishment wishes to dwell on, largely because it is almost certainly one of the results of policies that Democrats have espoused (and implemented) since Lyndon Johnson's Big Society of the 1960s. However, that is a subject for another day.
And none of this is to claim that police don't sometimes cross the line. However, when they do, the only incidents that make the news are those involving black people. When was the last time anybody rioted over the death of a Hispanic person or an Asian person, much less a Caucasian? These are the facts; I shall return to the myth and the use to which it's put shortly. In the meantime, the federal establishment has other strings to its bow and it's keen to use them all.
Expansion of federal law
Back in the day, federal law was limited to crimes that were properly national in nature, such as counterfeiting and treason, both of which could be said to be acts that undermined the country as a whole. Federal cases were a big deal. There was no pressing need to replicate state law; a duplication of effort was regarded as a waste of effort and the states themselves were far more more autonomous than they are now. Partly, this is due to the fact that 40% of all federal provisions passed since the Civil War (1861-1865) were passed in the last three decades of the last century. A large proportion of them are copy and pastes of state law:
“The Justice Department can’t even come up with a reliable count of the number of federal crimes on the books to enforce; it’s somewhere north of 3,000 but federal law is so voluminous and convoluted that no one has really tried to count it since 1982.”(16)
The Constitution of the United States, which has been routinely trampled all over for the best part of two centuries, clearly intends that the states administer the machinery of criminal and civil justice. However, that provision is now just one more dead letter. This long standing focus on the creation of federal crimes is not an accident of nature, either.
It might be thought that one of the reasons is that grandstanding in public and passing laws after notorious incidents have captured the public interest gives the illusion that the feds are 'doing something'. Equally, because crime in its totality affects the general population, legislating from the center is politically popular. For whatever reason, malign or banal, it is nonetheless a deliberate attempt to usurp the power of the states and to enlarge the federal budget once again. And federal courts have contributed to the standardization of laws across states; but states in a republic aren't the same as English counties, for instance. Diversity of outlook was to be encouraged, not obliterated.
The Supreme Court has held that Congress can encourage compliance with federal regulations and laws or seek to invoke the commerce clause (used and abused, and replete with ridiculously tangential judgements in order to extend federal law into places it was not supposed to go). They cannot, however, compel the states to comply.(17)(18) But, by the very act of creating like-for-like federal laws, the national administration can usurp state independence. In addition, federal laws require federal courts. Federal courts require federal law enforcement officers and so on. And federal taxes need to be raised to pay for that infrastructure.
Expansion of federal law enforcement
As of 2022, there are now thousands more federal bureaucrats with guns than there are US Marines – and there are 182,000 of the latter.(19) But the bureaucrats number over 200,000 and they are spread throughout the country. Not only are they well armed, they are also aiming for a virtual monopoly on the possession of ammunition; the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) alone spent over $700,000 on ammunition between March and June this year.(20) Perhaps this was in anticipation of the Inflation Reduction Act which, along with actually raising inflation, will authorize the recruitment of 87,000 new IRS agents, thus making the department bigger than the State Department, Pentagon, FBI and Border Patrol combined.(21) Their new budget will be $80 billion – it was $12.6 billion last year. Alternatively, they bought the ammo to prevent the public from getting hold of it.
The IRS aren't the only ones enjoying a bonanza. The Capitol Police who, as the name suggests, are responsible for the Capitol in Washington DC, have somehow been allowed to come up with a plan whereby they establish regional offices in other states. Apparently, they need eyes on the ground to better pre-empt 'domestic terrorism',(22) despite the fact that the DHS and the FBI – to name but two – are already in situ as nationalized police agencies whose remit includes the prevention and detection of terrorism offences. Could it be that, because the Capitol Police are the regime's personal police force (impervious to FOIA requests and lacking public oversight), they are in a better position to operate under the radar, unaccountably? Whether that is the intention or not is unimportant – the effect will be the same.
The Establishment is also trying to increase its reach in other respects. The FBI, whose veneer of political impartiality cracked long ago (Russiagate, Hunter Biden's laptop, the Capitol protest on January 6th , the Whitmer 'kidnapping plot and many more incidents besides) had the gall to request a half billion dollar budget raise for 2023, oblivious of the fact that a significant proportion of the US public no longer has faith in it – 64% of Republicans, 46% of independents and even 30% of Democrats.(23) In fact, the relevant poll asked whether the respondents considered the FBI to be Biden's personal Gestapo – so not much ambivalence in evidence there. Notwithstanding public disenchantment, the budget increase is most likely to be approved by a Congress which demonstrates equal disregard for the will of the people.
The administration also attempted to pass a bill that would have created extra offices within law enforcement agencies, tasked with seeking out 'domestic terrorism' and somehow preventing mass shootings. This ruse is transparent and easily divined from the accompanying wave of unsubstantiated verbiage emanating from the Democratic Party. The idea is to unmask 'white supremacists', the alleged greatest threat in the systemically racist country.(24) That was the headline, anyway. The Republicans pointed out that the executive already has the authority and the resources to investigate terrorist threats and the bill failed its passage in the Senate.
The Capitol Police scheme may well have been the fallback option for the junta; a spending proposal for them needs only a simple majority, whereas legislation requires a super-majority and that cannot presently be achieved. And, if all else fails, there's always the option to circumnavigate the entire democratic facade and just issue Executive Orders, constitutional or otherwise. Which Biden also does on a regular basis, for precisely that purpose and often in the aftermath of failed legislation.
The expansion of federal influence is the means by which the center's strength is increased. Doing the opposition down is the flip side of the same coin. So if the odds are to be further shifted against local law enforcement, it's also necessary to degrade their capabilities. The classic double whammy. Obama and Biden haven't shied away from that course of action, either – on the contrary, they've leaned into it with enthusiasm.
Peddling false narratives
As previously demonstrated, the assertion that the police are institutionally racist is not backed up by facts. But that is less important than it should be. As Goebbels articulated:
“A lie told once remains a lie, but a lie told a thousand times becomes the truth.”(25)
I imagine that all propagandists know the truth of this. Certainly, Obama does and he doesn't like the police. It doesn't appear that he ever really has. His appointments, nominations and advisors were frequently openly anti-police.(26) And it was he that gave Black Lives Matter (BLM) legitimacy when he invited some of its members to the White House in 2016.(27) BLM, it should be remembered, is an openly Marxist organisation that believes in the abolition of the police and of prisons and which advocates for the murder of police officers. They also revere cop killers.(28)(29) Every time someone bends the knee to them, that is what they are endorsing. It's an explicitly political gesture in support of BLM. However, none of that mattered to the president who invited them anyway.
"I think everybody understands all lives matter. I think the reason that the organizers used the phrase 'Black Lives Matter' was not because they were suggesting nobody else's lives matter. Rather, what they were suggesting was there is a specific problem that's happening in the African-American community that's not happening in other communities ... and that is a legitimate issue that we've got to address."(30)
Which is accurate, as far as it goes. But, as with every previous Democrat who sought to embrace the problem and solve it, Obama wasn't actually interested in the facts. The problem is overwhelmingly within the black communities, themselves; not with the police. But the focus of the meeting was to be about criminal justice reform and attempts to 'build trust' between law enforcement and black communities – long standing code for contentions that the justice system is biased and the police are, too.
It was shortly thereafter that the switch was flicked and the war on the police began in earnest. As is now standard in Western civilizations, the requirement for evidence was submerged by the rush to kowtow to monomaniacs. Or, if we wish to be cynical (and accurate), the state used the activism of an ill informed minority as cover for its own purposes; to weaken any part of law enforcement that wasn't under its direct control. I say this because the administration has never waged a similar campaign against federal entities. The DHS and the FBI, for instance, have not had to combat a narrative that maintains that they too are institutionally racist. Why not? Both services are forms of law enforcement and, presumably, attract similar personality types. Plus, of course, if America itself is institutionally racist, then they must be too. Apparently not. It's only state personnel that are the problem.
And so the conceit of implicit bias gained traction; the idea that, while explicit racism has markedly declined, unconscious biases remain. It's those biases that drive discriminatory behavior, favoring whites over blacks.
“The need to plumb the unconscious to explain ongoing racial gaps arises for one reason: it is taboo in universities and mainstream society to acknowledge intergroup differences in interests, abilities, cultural values, or family structure that might produce socioeconomic disparities.”(31)
As a stick to beat people with, it has a lot going for it. Rather like an (alleged) invisible virus with symptoms that could be ascribed to several different illnesses, it is hard to disprove the truth of it. The fact that it is also impossible to prove that it is, in fact, true is conveniently ignored. And so even the feds had to undergo implicit bias training, along with their red-necked colleagues from the boonies but, whereas federal employees were deemed to have received absolution for their sins, the less enlightened locals – who actually have to interact with the black community in unavoidably dynamic situations – were viewed as irredeemably recalcitrant.
Every time a black man (and it was usually a man) was shot by police, BLM would fulminate and protesters would take to the streets. The actual circumstances of the incident were not necessarily a focus because they usually involved active resistance by the suspect, either after an alleged crime or in the commission of one. But Black Lives Matter now had some kudos and Democrat politicians were anxious to spread whatever muck they could. Biden himself was responsible for a sizeable chunk of it. A few choice snippets:
“Every day, African Americans go about their lives with a constant anxiety and trauma. Imagine if you had to have that talk with your child about not asserting your rights, taking the abuse handed out to them [by police] just so they could make it home.”
The death of George Floyd had “ripped the blinders off for the whole world to see the systemic racism . . . that is a stain on our nation’s soul.” According to Biden, the “summer of protest” had sent the message: “Enough of the senseless [police] killings.”
After the Breonna Taylor killing:“Yes, there is a systemic injustice in this country . . . in the law enforcement.””(32)
These sentiments, shared by the toxic brew of Leftie politicians and their media allies, rapidly eroded the authority of local law enforcement. The allegation that the police were institutionally racist became a 'truism' because enough people repeated it enough times; the embodiment of Goebbels' maxim. The Establishment sought the neutering of law enforcement. For the activists, comprised of ill informed malcontents and grifters, the societal shift this created gave them room to act out their biases (and, in many cases, profit from them) with very little pushback, no matter how outrageous their actions. The next inevitable step was to create/exploit a crisis and try to demolish trust in the police across all demographics.
The summer of love
All it needed was a spark and the death of George Floyd provided it. Notwithstanding the fact that the country was locked-down in the grip of a 'pandemic', the 'mostly peaceful', orchestrated riots of 2020 created $2 billion of damage and resulted in at least 25 deaths. They spread throughout virtually every American city, destabilizing civic society and the Trump administration (just prior to the election). Despite the fact that less than 0.5% of all black lives lost occur in encounters with police (and a much smaller percentage than that might be problematic)(33), the lie had taken root and was flourishing. The result?
“Criminal destruction without punishment, attacking police without consequences and advocating physical resistance to lawful arrest all claim moral justification through the lie that the police are systemically racist. This has already resulted in new violence and will lead to more.”(34)
Democrat politicians, at both the national and state level, egged the rioters on. Curfews and lock-downs were flouted with impunity because, of course, the 'protests' were justified due to the inherently racist nature of the police. A massive crime wave ensued; murders of black people by other black people increased dramatically, up 1,200 on the previous year with the now customary 90% plus proportion of black offenders. This irony was lost on the Democrats and their enablers. There were organised robberies and looting in big cities such as Minneapolis, Chicago and San Francisco – the usual suspects, all run by radical Lefties.(35)(36)(37)(38)
If one of the rioters was unfortunate enough to trip over a police officer whilst in the act of hurling a Molotov cocktail at another blameless business premises, they could expect to be bailed out in short order by the Minnesota Freedom Fund, a non-profit (allegedly) supported by the likes of Kamala Harris, Justin Timberlake and Steve Carell. Or perhaps not. The list of offenders bailed out by the fund also includes many dangerous, violent offenders unconnected with the riots.(39) Nonetheless, it's the first time that a Vice-Presidential candidate - an ex Attorney General of California, no less – has campaigned on a platform that included supporting the bail of people the police had arrested. The message was clear.
The police were also being undermined from within, as well as without. The Portland mayor actually joined the rioters and numerous police chiefs across the country ordered their officers to stand down during the riots and, effectively, gave up control of the streets. Senior police officers could sense the way the wind was blowing and had zero faith in the likelihood that politicians would back them if they confronted those that the liberal elites had anointed as the righteous repressed. Proactive policing quickly became a thing of the past.
“The Black Lives Matter riots of 2020 were a turning point in the American public’s perception of the police. Our nation witnessed two phenomena never before thought possible. We saw a national political party encourage, support, and help instigate urban riots, violence, and destruction on an unprecedented scale. And second, Americans witnessed entire police departments in places like Seattle, Portland, and Minneapolis effectively surrender to anarchy and retreat in the face of the mob.”(40)
Not helping matters were the progressive District Attorneys, most backed by George Soros, who make it their business to handicap their own prosecutors by refusing to charge certain crimes, by undermining tough policing and by seeking to end mass incarceration – rather than doing the job that they were elected to do in the first place. This led to an inevitable increase in crime, as offenders realized that crimes such as shoplifting and criminal damage would not be prosecuted. The knock-on effect was that store detectives and police eventually stopped responding to offences such as these, as arresting and booking these criminals was an exercise in futility – no charges would be brought.(41)
In addition, there are two further avenues of attack on policing, both of which are the product of yet more Democrat activism.
Defund the police
This was the rallying call of the BLM Marxists and their allies, which became a go to policy in virtually all the big cities and urban areas. More than 20 major cities slashed their funding for their police departments, including Portland, Los Angeles, Oakland, New York, Seattle, Chicago, Minneapolis and Austin. The result was not unexpected. In Portland, murders tripled. The same happened in Oakland. Minneapolis experienced a 46% rise in homicides in just three months. New York, which slashed $1 billion from the police budget in 2020, saw a 40% rise in shootings.
In LA, murders rose by 38% while in Austin, Texas aggravated assaults were up 26%. Homicides and shootings in the Windy City were up 33% and 40% respectively. Similar massive increases in crime were also seen in San Francisco and Seattle.(42) This year is set to be even worse; Atlanta, Baltimore, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia and Washington DC are already ahead of last year's record breaking crime stats.(43)
Police officers left in droves; Portland's defund agenda, in particular, led to mass resignations. Ironically, when the city council tried to reverse course (once they realized their stupidity, a rather unusual occurrence in progressive circles) only 2 of the 81 ex-officers surveyed showed any interest in returning.(44) While 98% had a dim view of the city government, 60% didn't have much time for their own senior leadership, either – a familiar lament.(45) As one respondent put it: “The only difference between the PBB (Portland Police Bureau) and the Titanic? Deck chairs and a band.”(46) Many police departments are currently woefully understaffed and recruitment has cratered. After all, who would want to join the police now?
More pot shots
Not content with demonizing, defunding and demoralizing local law enforcement the Democrats also seek to deprive them of qualified immunity and, in the midst of the nationwide crime wave, to further degrade their functionality while simultaneously increasing the chances of harm being visited upon them. Having failed to pass his policing 'reform' bill Biden, in typical fashion, will use the two year anniversary of George Floyd's death to sign an Executive Order incentivising the curtailment of choke-holds and no-knock warrants and creating a national list of officers disciplined for misconduct.(47) I strongly suspect that the latter provision is unconstitutional, once again (by attempting to impose national standards on local policing), but that won't stop most police departments from caving in and providing the data, anyway.
Another attempt at kick the police while they are down, the end of qualified immunity, has so far come to naught, but don't expect that to stop the regime trying again at some point. Opponents of the doctrine insist that it shields police officers from accountability. It doesn't – police are still accountable for unlawful behavior. Instead,
“...qualified immunity simply recognizes that many situations faced by police officers are so unique that established rules and laws are not clear, leaving police officers to make split second decisions that no one has prescribed responses for. In order to allow officers to make those decisions unencumbered by the ever-present cloud of litigation that can ruin their career and finances, qualified immunity may apply. And it may not. Immunity must be determined by the court as a defense to a lawsuit which means that there is judicial oversight on the issue and it is not always afforded to officers.”(48)
What is never mentioned, along with the true nature of qualified immunity, is the fact that legislators (like the senators trying to remove it from police) enjoy it, as do judges and prosecutors. Some protected businesses do also. In any event, it's not difficult to see what effect its removal might have. The US is an extraordinarily litigious society as it is. Cops would not be able to do their job with the threat of a ruinously expensive lawsuit hanging over them the minute they did something that someone else deemed a less than perfect response. So, many would leave and few would replace them. Which is, presumably, the idea.
There is one final way in which regimes can complete the alienation of the police from their constituencies, whilst at the same time enlisting them in a joint enterprise.
Make police a tool of autocracy
It is remarkably easy to enlist the police in a totalitarian power grab. While it's certainly true that some bad apples are attracted to the prospect of a badge and a gun for reasons that do not include public service, but rather a desire to dominate and bully their fellow citizens, most cops have traditionally been animated by purer motives. The nature of their job requires them to be steadfast and disciplined, prepared to safeguard public order (if necessary) and enforce laws, even when their own personal sympathies lie elsewhere.
This habitual obedience to authority makes them particularly vulnerable to manipulation by bad actors. It almost guarantees that they will enforce flagrantly illegitimate or unconstitutional legislation without demur. They become willing facilitators of authoritarianism if, instead of applying the principles of fairness and proportionality in their dealings with the public (while keeping in mind that there ought to be an easily recognizable link between their orders and what they perceive to be natural law), they instead focus wholly on the process and the need to obey commands. Police are normally encouraged to exercise discretion and flexibility when problem solving, albeit within a framework. When those qualities are replaced by a 'comply or else' mindset – or when a siege mentality evinces a hardening of resolve and a rejection of nuance - the relationship between the police and the public rapidly worsens.
This is the obvious outcome of both the derogatory rhetoric aimed at the cops – which has turned public opinion against them, to some degree - and their enlistment in the enforcement of corrupt practices; notable among the latter are their role at elections and in policing protests. It doesn't take much for the public to see them as the enforcement arm of state repression. The regime doesn't care about that as it is the desired outcome. However, this effect is more easily achievable at the city, state or federal level, due to the relative anonymity that law enforcement enjoys when it doesn't routinely operate in local communities. It's not something that the local police will be able to sustain, when they've lived somewhere all their lives and still do.
The result of all this?
As might be expected, catastrophic. Biden's first year in office saw 73 police officers killed; the most since 1995. This is a 59% increase over 2020 and largely the result of a huge rise in 'ambush' attacks. 32 officers died this way in 2021, up from 10 in 2020 and 7 in 2019.(49) Retirements are up 45%, resignations up 18%.(50) Recruitment isn't keeping up. Policing can be a dangerous job. It's not particularly well paid, given the risks involved. If cops know they don't have the backing of the hierarchy above them, if prosecutors go to bat for the opposition, if they are increasingly obliged to defend policies that they find abhorrent and, as a result, are appreciated by no-one, those who view policing as a vocation (the best ones) will leave and the federal government will have succeeded in its quest to undermine local policing. This will present them with an opportunity to present an alternative – it doesn't take much grey matter to work out what form that will take.
The police are one thing. The military are another thing entirely, but they must also be brought under control, even if they are the federal government's responsibility from the outset.
The purge of the military
One of the first things the new administration did was to instigate a stand-down of the military while they scoured the services for signs of white supremacy. It was within two weeks of assuming power. This is somewhat difficult to comprehend from the perspective of an anti-wokeist. Was there a crisis brewing? Foreknowledge of the establishment of an inter-services Klu Klux Klan? The Democrats would likely have an awareness of any such organisation as the original version was formed by them, back in the nineteenth century.(51) The fact that most people think that the KKK (and the Jim Crow laws)(52) were the Republicans doing is a mark of how thoroughly the Left has brainwashed society. But I digress.
The military itself is split into four arms – Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force. The total number of Active Duty, Reserve and National Guard personnel is in excess of 2.1 million, of which the army is just under half,(53) so an ideological check on this number of people is not a small undertaking. And what were some of the indicators of fealty? Not an adherence to the principles of the Constitution, nor any belief in a higher power; unless the higher power was Biden, that is. The impostor President's Press Secretary was explicit:
“The president’s qualification requirements are ….whether you’re aligned with the values of this administration.”(54)
Not an unexpected statement now that we've had eighteen months of the Biden government, but still a bit of a shocker. The US military is supposed to be apolitical. Its job is relatively straightforward. The values they live by are not, almost by definition, aligned with any political party's. Not any more. The US military now celebrates Pride Month, recognising the 2.9% of society who somehow deserve a month of 'celebration'. Some tributes were more risible than others. The Space Force takes first prize, if such a thing exists any more.
Figure 1 Marine Corps
Figure 2 US Space Force
The original purge encompassed acts such as a suspension of the oversight boards for the US military academies, which are made up of members appointed by the President. Often, this requires Republican and Democrat appointees to serve together. These boards are incorporated by federal statute. None of that mattered. Once the 'review' was completed, all 18 of President Trump's appointees were fired without explanation, despite the fact that they were all serving three year terms. This had never been done before.(55) And, once more, it is almost certainly unconstitutional.(56) But this administration cares not for the Constitution, like some others before it. It's just a lot more brazen in demonstrating its contempt.
The reason for the purge soon became apparent. The academies were about to undergo a curriculum change – a change that oversight boards would inevitably have become aware of and one that the regime wanted to keep secret. It took numerous FOIA requests and emails, but eventually evidence was uncovered that proved that Critical Race Theory was being taught at West Point, the US Military Academy. Students are taught that CRT
“grows out of the field of law and studies the way that racism is built into and reproduced through the institutions that organise everyday life.”(57)
That would seem to align with the values of the administration; just not with the vast majority of society, which is a recurring theme. Members of the existing military were treated to a succession of policy volte-face's on such matters as uniform standards (loosened) and transgenders serving in the military (now allowed). And then the attacks on the class of people who make up the bedrock of the Army (in particular) began in earnest.
The man charged with 'fighting extremism in the military, a radical Leftist who writes that “when I walk into a room...I count the black and brown faces....”(58) is a firm believer in systemic racism; naturally. In fact, according to him, it's one of America's greatest national security challenges. His job is to hunt out extremists in the military, although it's abundantly clear what color these extremists would be and what political affiliation they would espouse. And yet, ironically, the last two extremists to carry out attacks while serving members of the military were both Muslims. Neither was wearing a MAGA hat at the time.
Major Nidal Hassan killed 13 and injured 30 at Fort Hood in 2009, but his attack was categorized as workplace violence rather than domestic terrorism, notwithstanding the fact that he was in correspondence with a terrorist who was senior enough to be targeted (subsequently) in a drone strike and the fact that he shouted “Allaha Akbar” when he started shooting.(59) Sgt Hasan Akbar threw hand grenades into tents in Kuwait and then used his rifle on others soldiers, killing two and wounding 14.(60) But Muslims get a free pass. Christians don't.
However, the regime's most effective tool for identifying conservative 'domestic extremists' is the deployment of a cunningly disguised Trojan horse. The 'vaccine' mandates.
Unfit by design
To be clear from the outset, the mandate is illegal. The product that has been nominally approved – Comirnaty – doesn't yet exist outside a laboratory. Every other 'vaccine' is authorized under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). In civilian life, no drug with an EUA can be mandated. It's that simple – or it should be. In the military, matters are a little more opaque (but not much more). What is certain is that there can be no mandate unless the President authorizes the administration of EUA vaccines to the military – and he hasn’t.(61) Opposition to the mandates is much more prevalent among conservatives and the religious, who are also highly likely to be conservative, as well. Hence, the mandates are a proxy for identifying the type of person that this administration is trying to get rid of, such as the 25,000 personnel who requested a religious exemption – only 10 of which were granted.(62)
There are an astonishing 260,000 servicemen and women who had second thoughts after only one shot – presumably when they say the devastation that was going on around them.(63)(64) The overwhelming majority are in the Army, a quarter of which is, therefore, not fully 'vaccinated'. As things stand, they are going to be sacked.(65) This would present something of a problem or, more accurately, it would do if the intention was to maintain a strong and competent military. Not so much if the intention is to do the opposite.
The US military recruits 180,000 members a year; usually. Last year that number was a mere 69,000. Getting above this number will not be easy, as an astonishing 71% of 17-24 year olds are ineligible to serve due to one of four factors (or a combination of several) – overweight, uneducated, medically unfit or a convicted felon.(66)
The regime is also taking down the military that remain. These numbers come from the Department of Defense database; yet one more example of the regime shooting itself in the foot by publishing the evidence that proves its own malfeasance. Taking the years 2016-2020 as a baseline (and yes, that includes year one of the 'pandemic'), the total incidences of injury averages out at 1.7 million a year, every year. 'Vaccines' were mandated in January 2021; by the end of October, the total incidences of injury for the year was 22 million, thirteen times higher Some specific categories include the following – female infertility, normal average approximately 2,200 yearly - 2021 figure, 11,000. Oesophageal cancer, a pretty niche disease you might think and the usual rate of incidence confirms that; one year 26, the next year 39, but all in the range, except for 2021, when the number was 209. There are many other categories of illness that reveal similar increases.
Then there are reports of anxiety, which may not seem a particularly serious complaint, unless you happen to be a fighter pilot or a tank commander, when a clear mind would be handy; ordinarily, consistently around 37,000 cases per annum – 2021 number, 931,000. Think about that for a moment; military commanders deliberately incapacitating their own troops. It is inconceivable that the brass doesn't know what they're doing and yet they're still doing it.(67) When confronted with the evidence, the military denied that the 'vaccines' were the cause of any increase in illnesses. They came up with a novel excuse; they'd put the previous data in wrong. In other words, for five straight years, the data was seriously corrupted and none of the DoD’s data analysts figured this out, and then it fixed itself on its own in 2021. And the levels of illness in the military, for six straight years are off the charts when compared to the civilian population.(68)
Unlike the police, the military has been comprehensively sundered from within. Wokeism and mandates will exorcise the traditional white, conservative, working class recruit. The mass sacking of a quarter of a million personnel will cripple the effectiveness of the Army. Present levels of recruitment are nowhere near sufficient to cope with natural attrition, let alone a shortfall of at least twice that many personnel. And of those that remain, a significant number are temporarily or permanently incapacitated. None of that can possibly be put down to incompetence. This regime has deliberately knee-capped itself and if I can see that, I'm damned sure the Chinese and the Iranians can, too. The Army won't be anywhere near the threat it would have been if it takes against the junta at some point in the near future, which is exactly the point.
“America’s tradition and principles, the rule of law, legitimacy of the police and the foundations of our democracy are being attacked from all sides. We are in a cultural civil war. America can be saved, but it will take police leaders and all Americans who believe in our country to stand up together to speak out—now. This must start with exposing the big lie that that police in the United States are systemically racist.”(69)
The regime is coming at the police from many different angles. There was the cosying up phase, which has given way to a much more hostile approach, inevitable utilizing the progressive's tool of choice – race. By hamstringing local law enforcement with new restrictions, more oversight and increasing federalization, by creating a public environment where the police are simultaneously disrespected by criminal and good citizen alike and by driving a wedge between police and their local communities, the regime is attempting to neuter the police. And it's working.
It's not as though the police don't soil their own nest at times, as they did at Uvalde recently.(70) And so the regime's medium term plan is to ensure that local cops are viewed in an increasingly negative light, either by reason of their sins of commission (which will be exaggerated and fabricated) or by virtue of an inadequate response to a crisis which is beyond their capacity for successful intervention. The feds can then step in and restore order; a new paradigm will emerge, one which cements the federal government's status as first amongst equals.
The alphabet agencies are already paragons of virtue (defined as reliably pro federal) and the military is in the process of being transformed into a sick, woke shadow of its former self. The question is, why would anybody set out to do these things? The harm caused is as a result of choices that have been made by the Democrats and the liberals of the administrative state in service of an agenda. And what do these people need if their radical vision is to come to fruition? I would suggest that they need control, above all else.
To achieve the necessary dominance, they have to ensure that those entities that might offer meaningful resistance are nullified. The first phase of that mission is now nearing completion. The second phase will need to deal with a population of gun-toting civilians. The state will have to find a way of confiscating nearly 400 million firearms. And that battle, over the continued application of the Second Amendment, will be the subject of my next missive.
(14) Taboo: 10 Facts You Can't Talk About Wilfred Reilly
Figure 2 Ditto
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