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Gestapo stupidity
Dec 29th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

Gun­pow­der Is Okay to Bring on an Air­plane.

Putting it in a clear plas­tic bag­gie mag­i­cal­ly makes it safe:

Mind you, I had packed the stuff safe­ly. It was in three sep­a­rate jars: one of char­coal, one of sul­phur, and one of salt­pe­tre (potas­si­um nitrate). Each jar was labeled: Char­coal, Sul­phur, Salt­pe­tre. I had also thor­ough­ly wet down each pow­der with tap water. No igni­tion was pos­si­ble. As a good cit­i­zen, I had packed the result­ing pastes into a quart-sized “3−1−1” plas­tic bag, along with my sham­poo and hand cream. This bag I took out of my mes­sen­ger bag and put on top of my bin of belong­ings, turned so that the labels were easy for the TSA inspec­tor to read.

[Schneier on Secu­ri­ty]

Of course this worked not because the Check­point Char­lies thought it was safe, but because they were so abysmal­ly igno­rant that they didn’t know what you get by mix­ing those ingre­di­ents.

Watching a really bad Sci-Fi C…
Dec 20th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

Watch­ing a real­ly bad Sci-Fi Chan­nel movie about Aztecs armed with crick­et bats.

A cop tells the truth
Dec 19th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

Dead Dog Tales.

Two dogs killed this week in Gwin­net Coun­ty, Geor­gia. Two very dif­fer­ent reac­tions from local author­i­ties.

Here’s the first:

Gwin­nett police are ask­ing for the public’s help in track­ing down the per­son who stabbed and dis­mem­bered a dog before dis­card­ing the car­cass behind a Duluth store.

[…]

A stab wound led to the dog’s death, said Gwin­nett police spokes­woman Cpl. Illana Spell­man.

Spell­man said inves­ti­ga­tors are espe­cial­ly anx­ious to get leads that could point them to the cul­prit in the “grue­some” crime, adding that “any­body that is capa­ble of doing that is capa­ble of doing any­thing,” Spell­man said.

Who­ev­er killed the dog is sub­ject to be charged with aggra­vat­ed cru­el­ty to ani­mals, which car­ries a penal­ty of one to five years in prison and fines of up to $15,000, police said.

Here’s the oth­er sto­ry:

A fam­i­ly in Gwin­nett Coun­ty was out­raged Wednes­day night after they say police offi­cers shot their beloved dog.  The home­own­ers said the inci­dent hap­pened because police went to the wrong house.

[…]

The home­own­er said when police went into the garage she heard three shots.  The home­own­er said an offi­cer told her they shot the dog and the dog ran off.

[…]

Offi­cer said they were look­ing for a mate­r­i­al wit­ness in a gang member’s tri­al, but they entered the wrong home.  Police entered 1468B, instead of 1468A.

Offi­cers said the dog charged and the offi­cer felt he was in immi­nent dan­ger and shot the dog.

The vicious beast was a 2-year-old Dal­ma­t­ian.

It’s the sec­ond time in 10 days that cops in Gwin­nett Coun­ty have forced their way into the wrong home.

[The Agi­ta­tor]

I don’t often see a Gestapo spokesman (or woman) tell the truth, but when this thug said that “any­body that is capa­ble of [bru­tal­ly killing a dog] is capa­ble of doing any­thing,” she was clear­ly not spec­u­lat­ing, but speak­ing from per­son­al expe­ri­ence.

Cops being cops
Dec 18th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

Anoth­er Iso­lat­ed Inci­dent.

But not a drug raid.  A pros­ti­tu­tion raid.

It was a lit­tle before 8 at night when the break­er went out at Emi­ly Milburn’s home in Galve­ston. She was busy prepar­ing her chil­dren for school the next day, so she asked her 12-year-old daugh­ter, Dymond, to pop out­side and turn the switch back on.
 
As Dymond head­ed toward the break­er, a blue van drove up and three men jumped out rush­ing toward her. One of them grabbed her say­ing, “You’re a pros­ti­tute. You’re com­ing with me.”

Dymond grabbed onto a tree and start­ed scream­ing, “Dad­dy, Dad­dy, Dad­dy.” One of the men cov­ered her mouth. Two of the men beat her about the face and throat. 

As it turned out, the three men were plain-clothed Galve­ston police offi­cers who had been called to the area regard­ing three white pros­ti­tutes solic­it­ing a white man and a black drug deal­er.

All this is accord­ing to a law­suit filed in Galve­ston fed­er­al court by Mil­burn against the offi­cers. The law­suit alleges that the offi­cers thought Dymond, an African-American, was a hook­er due to the “tight shorts” she was wear­ing, despite not fit­ting the racial descrip­tion of any of the female sus­pects. The police went to the wrong house, two blocks away from the area of the report­ed ille­gal activ­i­ty…

So you’d think that after the police fig­ured out they had the wrong house, they’d apol­o­gize, and pos­si­bly even com­pen­sate the girl and her fam­i­ly. Accord­ing to the law­suit, you’d be wrong:

After the inci­dent, Dymond was hos­pi­tal­ized and suf­fered black eyes as well as throat and ear drum injuries. 

Three weeks lat­er, accord­ing to the law­suit, police went to Dymond’s school, where she was an hon­or stu­dent, and arrest­ed her for assault­ing a pub­lic ser­vant. Grif­fin says the alle­ga­tions stem from when Dymond fought back against the three men who were try­ing to take her from her home. The case went to tri­al, but the judge declared it a mis­tri­al on the first day, says Grif­fin. The new tri­al is set for Feb­ru­ary.

I have a call into the Galve­ston dis­trict attor­ney and with Dymond Milburn’s lawyer. We’re going on a press account of one side of a law­suit, here.  So it’s possible—and I would hope—that there are some impor­tant details miss­ing.

Oth­er­wise, a police mis­take leads to an inno­cent 12-year-old get­ting vio­lent­ly snatched up and roughed up by a group of plain­clothes cops jump­ing out of a van … and they charge her for resist­ing?

[Hit and Run]

A com­ment on this post linked to a court doc­u­ment that iden­ti­fies the kid­nap­ping scum­bags as Sergeant Gilbert Gomez (badge #987), Offi­cers David Roark (badge #332), Justin Popovich (badge #336), and Sean Stew­art (badge #392). Nat­u­ral­ly there have been, and will be, no offi­cial action tak­en against these cop­scum, because what they did is the epit­o­me of good police work in the Evil Empire. How­ev­er, since their iden­ti­ties are known, I hold out hope that all four of them will mys­te­ri­ous­ly get shot in the head at some point.

Quote of the Day
Dec 17th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

[Muntad­har al-Zeidi] threw that shoe for the whole world.

Unknown origin–a Google search turned up the same sen­ti­ment from mul­ti­ple sources.

@NinaStorey Congratulations on…
Dec 16th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

@Nina­S­torey Con­grat­u­la­tions on sur­viv­ing the triathlon!

Quote of the Day
Dec 16th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

Those who live by the sword tend to get shot by those who don’t.

Unknown Ori­gin

An Iraqi hero
Dec 15th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

Free Bush shoe-thrower, Iraqis urge. Pro­test­ers demand release of jour­nal­ist held after hurl­ing footwear at US pres­i­dent. [AL JAZEERA ENGLISH (AJE)]

In Arab cul­ture, throw­ing a shoe at some­one is a severe insult. Per­son­al­ly, I think what al-Zeidi did was a hero­ic act com­pa­ra­ble to the man who stood in front of the tanks in Tianan­men Square. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, I think it’s like­ly that he’ll come to just as unpleas­ant an end. He’s prob­a­bly already dis­ap­peared into one of the Evil Empire’s secret pris­ons.

@terranaomi That’s what they c…
Dec 11th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

@ter­ranao­mi That’s what they call “social secu­ri­ty” when some­one oth­er than the gov­ern­ment runs it

Grammy nominations
Dec 5th, 2008 by Ken Hagler

This year’s Gram­my nom­i­na­tions have been announced, and there are three peo­ple I’ve pho­tographed on the list: Sara Bareilles, Katy Per­ry, and Rufus Wain­wright. Sara got two nom­i­na­tions, includ­ing Song of the Year for “Love Song.” Appar­ent­ly the music indus­try has very long years, as she wrote that (and first per­formed it) in 2005…

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