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“We need to address issues such as over-criminalization, excessive and disproportionate sentencing, inadequate indigent defense that is inconsistent with the Sixth Amendment, and the militarization of police. We have deep respect for the moral dignity of each and every person and because of this, we’ve worked for decades to support those who defend the full range of individual rights.” – Koch Industries general counsel Mark Holden in Koch Brothers Take On Camo-Wearing Cops [at thedailybeast.com] [h/t Mike M.]

62 Responses to Quote of the Day: The Second Amendment is an Individual Right Edition

    • lol. I scrolling down thinking of how many Reid comments there’d be, the first comment I read didn’t disappoint.

  1. Excellent, enemies of enemies and all that.

    If LEOs value their lives and liberties more than they value the lives and liberty of the public they serve, then they need to leave public service and find a more suitable and profitable career. I suggest investment banking.

  2. s l o w c l a p … more clapping … becoming thunderous applause!

    Pay very close attention everyone. Our nation is finally taking notice because of large protests and riots in Ferguson, MO. The average Joe writing some letters to politicians wasn’t the catalyst. A lot of people holding up signs wasn’t the catalyst. Unfortunately, it took the property destruction of riots to get the message across.

    What is incredibly sad is that the damaged businesses are not in any way, shape, or form responsible and yet they are going to pay the price. I wonder if there is a way to get politicians’ attention without destroying private businesses who are not responsible for the wrongs of government?

  3. If they were into throwing money around (they’re not) they could do some damage by helping to get those new NRA commercials some wider primetime play. Especially the “what good can come from a government list” one; it ties in very well with their militarization theme. If libs, the majority of whom are actually not invested in this issue, see this message on the networks, they will be more aware that we are standing up to them. This discouragement will trigger their natural surrender reflex, and they will stay home in November. Or, barring that, it could at least sway some independents.

  4. I guess you should imagine those words being spoken in a Darth Vader voice since the Koch brothers are that evil.

  5. Ok, so when (not if) the next terrorist strike hits our nation everybody will be saying: How come the police weren’t ready for this? We pay them to protect us and they dropped the ball!

    The police need to be trained and equipped for any and all situations. That said, perhaps administrators need to do their job and hire quality personnel with integrity and a solid moral code.

    • “We pay them to protect us and they dropped the ball!”

      That ball has been laying in the mud for a long time now.

        • The “intelligence services” don’t drive around the neighborhood in MRAPS and dressed in camo. They aren’t the ones drawing complaints hereabouts.

        • The front line against acts of terror on US soil are ordinary people paying attention and reporting or acting against that which is obviously wrong. Who stopped the airliner shoe bomber? The underwear bomber? The Times Square bomber? In each of those cases a would-be terrorist attack was identified by people who are not a part of the military, law enforcement, or intelligence community. In the case of the two attempted plane bombings, the passengers also confronted the would-be bombers. And, lets not forget Flight 93. The “citizen’s militia” has done quite well for itself.

    • “administrators need to do their job and hire quality personnel with integrity and a solid moral code.”

      Good organizations require good leaders. It’s not an issue of a couple bad apples, it’s an issue of entire organizations creating a culture of “us vs them” and “just want to get home at the end of the day”. We have elected politicians who largely have disdain for the public they ostensibly serve, who then appoint others with the same worldview to head up police forces. The end result is what we see now, with entire organizations looking at the public as opposed to their employer.

    • Two things:

      -The police have no duty to protect: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warren_v._District_of_Columbia#Decision
      -The police overall have shown an inability to effectively and correctly employ force. It seems that much of their budget is spent on new toys and not nearly enough spent on learning how to effectively use them. Hell, police have carried handguns for as long as there has been handguns and they still can’t shoot well enough to miss innocent bystanders. I don’t think it’s asking too much for them to have better than 17% accuracy.

    • Warren vs DC
      Law enforcement have no duty to protect anyone or anything unless there was a specific pre-existing agreement to do so.

    • If only we had some sort of centralized agency that could gather intelligence and prevent those type of attacks. Or maybe a security agency on a national scale. Some sort of national security agency.

      Maybe everyday beat cops aren’t the best tool to stop terrorist attacks?

    • Sean,

      “The police need to be trained and equipped for any and all situations.”

      I disagree. It is an indisputable fact that police cannot be everywhere. Thus all the training and equipment in the world is useless if the police are not already at the location where violent criminals or terrorists attack.

      The fact of the matter is that it takes at least five minutes and probably more like 10 minutes for even a handful of police officers to show up even in best case scenarios. (A best case scenario is an attack in a major metro area during excellent weather and light traffic.) In worst case scenarios, such as remote locations or during a hurricane/bilzzard, it could take police anywhere from 20 minutes to hours to respond to an attack.

      Like it or not, We the People are everywhere and we are the true first responders to any crisis. That is why We the People need the best equipment and training available. It is wonderful when professional responders show up minutes or hours later to assist … everyone loves seeing the cavalry. Until they arrive, however, we cannot let violent attackers have free reign to murder, rape, pillage, and plunder. We have to respond. And that is why we have to have great equipment and training.

      • Good luck with that, especially with our statist politicians in power. Just shelter in place and give them what they want.\.

    • It is the military’s and the Federal government’s job to protect us from terrorists, not your local police. You do not want your local police acting the same way as the military.

    • Well Sean, we get the”administrators” and the cops we deserve. The reason we have reached this place is because the people have abdicated their responsibility to provide their own protection and placed it into the hands of their “betters”, the “public servants”.

      So with the power comes corruption, abuse, and misuse of that power against what are now we the servants and the public servants now see themselves as the masters.

      Until the people decide they will start acting as mature adults; what you are suggesting will have the same effect as rearranging the chairs on the Titanic.

    • I would not point a finger at LEO in such a case. Don’t forget about the security theater of DHS and TSA…frisking kids and wheel-chair-bound grandmothers while ignoring border sercurity. 13 years (and surely countless billions of dollars) of these monstrous goverment programs, not to mention growth of the NSA, CIA and FBI ranks and now we are told a terrorist attack from ISIS is “imminent”.

    • Police are law enforcement officers. They are not intended, trained, or equipped to deal with terrorist attacks.

      That’s what we have a military (including the National Guard) for.

      • Depends on the terrorists. Response time from military and guard is going to be pretty slow. Police or private citizens could have taken out the Tsarnev Brothers. Well, if they would quit shooting each other. I just do not see most terrorists in the USA being that heavily armed.

    • Er, a bunch of cops in camo and armor carrying M4’s and Barrett sniper rifles isn’t going to stop a plane flying into a building, nor bomb in a mall going off.

      Maybe if they had armored cars or APC’s…. oh wait.

      • Most terrorist operations in the USA are going to be very low intensity operations. Small lightly armed covert groups are going to be the norm.

    • Sean hit the nail on the head. Muslim terrorists, drug addicts and gangs have changed the rules. Police need gear to take on modern threats. It is the mental outlook of the police leadership that must change. The key to modern policing is to eliminate the potential for violence. One way to do this is to disarm the population. Another way is to have the capability to kill everyone in the community. The smart way to do this is to actively involve the citizens. Police departments isolate themselves from the community they serve. This needs to stop.

      • Personally, I won’t live in such a police state. A domestic police force with such scope and ability is akin to what existed in the Third Reich.

        We have a military to deal with terrorists.

  6. Police militarization is rapidly becoming the cry-racism of the so-called right. The police are not militarized as much as “SWATerized.” SWAT was originally designed for special circumstances like dealing with spree shooters and, yes, to support the regular cop during civil disorders like we just saw in Ferguson. They weren’t supposed to be used for serving warrants except in very limited circumstances. Dressing the police in camo, as silly as they look, no more makes them militarized than some FUD in the woods chasing after deer in real tree or some AR toting citizen who is running around in BDUs.

    I also note a contradiction among critics of the police when they say they are civilians/citizens just like us while claiming the militia consists of “all the people.” Police by this definition are also part of militia except they are on “active duty” full time. So unless you think that only people who are not acting as government agents can be militia “militarized police” should present no problem per se. If this is what you believe I suggest you read Article I section 8 to see that indeed the militia is a government regulated institution.

    • “Active duty full time” is inconsistent with a militia comprised of the People. It’s more akin to a standing army, which the Framers abhorred and which the Militia was intended both to prevent and to counter.

      • Not true on several accounts. A nation always has ongoing security requirements, the Founding Fathers recognized that their ideal of militia army was nice in theory but not in practice. They created a small standing army, a navy and the US Marshal Service very early.. This was further reinforced after the Napoleonic Wars where the militia proved to be such a failure that the Capital was burned to the ground and the Battle of Plattsburg was nearly lost. At that point they recognized that a militia force could never defend the nation alone and required a cadre of a trained standing force.

        Knowledge of history goes a long way. I suggest you read some.

        • “Knowledge of history goes a long way. I suggest you read some.”

          Pot, meet kettle.

          We didn’t get the military complex we have today after the War of 1812. Or even the Civil War. Or even World War 1. It’s a mid 20th Century invention. We’ve always had a small standing army backed by a large militia/Guard and a standing professional navy as specified in the Constitution, of which a large standing army was not supposed to exist for more than two years (Article I Section VIII). We’ve always raised and trained the requisite army from this tiny cadre of the best NCO’s and Officers as needed and then disbanded it after the conflict, and we managed to win (or draw in the case of 1812) every war including two World Wars in that time. After the Civil War, European Powers were completely aghast that we disbanded the most powerful army in the world and let our new iron-clads rust away without using it them conquer and colonize our neighbors. That was SOP for a European nation at that time. We were pretty awesome like that.

          In the time since we’ve established our quasi Praetorian Guard it seems like we’ve lost one war after another. So not only is maintaining a large standing army unconstitutional and incredibly expensive, it’s also apparently ineffective.

        • Your history is as deficient as the rest. We disbanded a large part of our Military in the 19th Century because there was no threat. We were the warlike power the 19th Century, not the Prussian, the French, The Russians, the Austrians and the British. They hardly fought at all. We disbanded our powerful military after WWI and withdrew from Europe. That came back to haunt us in 1941 and early 1942. We again demobilized after WWII or tried to. After all we did have the bomb. And then we were faced with communist expanision. You see in the real world, as opposed to that of the keyboard commando, the United States is not an isolated nation that doesn’t interact with the world

    • I agree with your first paragraph; but, I’m not convinced by the latter paragraph. I think the distinction between a “standing army” vs. “the People” don’t have the simple meaning that we ascribe to them today as they meant in the 18’th century.
      A “standing army” at the founding looked like the “red coats” the revolutionaries faced. They were answerable to the king and the king alone. They were the dregs of society who were professional soldiers in the sense that that was expected to be their lifetime career (however short that might turn out to be). The standing army was a tool of tyranny.
      In contrast, the militia was nearly synonymous with the People. Farmers, craftsmen who would muster in an emergency and who would promptly return to civilian life. They would answer to their neighbors when they returned to their homes. If they disobeyed orders they might be court marshaled and shot; but that risk would not be sufficient to compel them to fire upon their neighbors. They would have to face their neighbors’ widows upon mustering-out.
      The relatively clear distinction existing in the 18’th century has become jumbled. Our military pursues an up-or-out such that only a small percentage of men in service expect to make it a lifetime career; or, earn full retirement. After a hitch or two they usually expect to be discharged and return to civilian life. They might serve in the National Guard; but, even in this case, I suspect that most servicemen/Guardsmen see themselves more closely aligned to their neighbors than to the Commander-in-Chief.
      Conversely, most police expect to make a career of the job; or, at least, earn a full pension before leaving active duty. The personal financial goal of earning that full pension aligns their sense of duty to their superiors that is – I think – more line the notion of a “standing army”. A police officer ordered to disburse a more-or-less-peaceful/disorderly crowd is apt to seriously consider his career and wonder whether his orders are really a violation of the 1A.
      I wouldn’t go so far as to say that the standing-army/the-People distinction has completely reversed from the 18’th to the 21’st centuries. Instead, I’m suggesting that we ought to think carefully about precisely what it was that caused the founders to be so wary of a “standing army” and so confident in the militia. I really don’t think that the founders imagined that the new Federal government would hire Hessian mercenaries; rather, the American standing army would be recruited from native-born citizens – from the same People as comprised the militia. If you grant me this assumption (no Hessian mercenaries in the standing army) then what were the founders worried about? Did they fear that a man who had enlisted in the army for 12 – 36 months would become a tool of tyranny whereas a militiaman mustered for 12 to 36 days would fear answering to his neighbors? Or, did they worry that a man who expected to serve the king for 20 years would do so but a militiaman who expected to muster-out would not? If I’m on to something here, then we need to re-think the relationship of the People to: servicemen; Guardsmen; and, police.

      • What the Founding Fathers were most concerned with was the man on horseback, what became known as Bonapartism, someone who would use the standing Army to conduct a coup and set himself up as a dictator. A ambitious man like Aaron Burr and as some believed at the time Andrew Jackson. They were less concerned about an elected civil government doing it.

        The militia idea was failure. Men who have other concerns will not fight. Witness the rout at Bladensburg and the abandonment of a critical position at Plattsburg. Only men whose permanent vocation was soldiering or long serving volunteers would stand and fight. The Militia had one more chance to prove itself during Blackhawk Wars. They failed. Never again would the militia be called to service in any other form than a national draft.

    • Perception is everything. They LOOK like the the military, they ACT like the military and they’re ARMED like the military. I guess the public will just have to take the word of more sophisticated observers that in fact they’re just plain old coppers, right?

      • So when some FUD is out in his tree stand in camo people will think he looks like he is in the military. Militarized FUDS with sniper rifles. Works for me.

        So if they armed like the military I guess Shannon is right that an AR-15 or a Glock are miliary weapon.

        • False equivalency is false.

          When he sticks his weapon in your face and starts issuing orders under pain of violence, come back we’ll talk. Until then…. .

        • Well Pete, I don’t know about you but I would get prettu upset if a regular old fashion cop stuck a 686 in my face. Apparently, you would find that acceptable.

    • “Dressing the police in camo, as silly as they look, no more makes them militarized than some FUD in the woods ”

      I think you meant “Fudd” as in Elmer Fudd, not “FUD” as in Fear Uncertainty, Doubt.

  7. Remember guys these are the Koch brothers, you’re not supposed to like them. Why? Don’t worry about that, just trust us.

  8. I would call it the “Judge Dredd” syndrome, where you are expected to submit automatically to any authority in uniform, or else!

  9. The Koch Brothers are not conservative, they’re libertarian. The only reason they align themselves with republicans is because of economic issues. On social issues they’re worlds apart from the socon agenda.

  10. ” . . . Dressing the police in camo, as silly as they look . . .”

    This pretty much says it all and it’s something I hadn’t really realized until now. Strutting around a city street wearing cammo designed for desert-warfare just looks plain silly. So, for that matter, does the shaved-head, wrap-around sunglasses you-can’t-touch-me “operator” look affected by—wait for it—suburban traffic cops. Generally, too many cops seem to be working overly hard at perfecting their costumes. Not only do they look silly, they also are beginning to look like characters in a low-budget comic-opera. Making a spectacle of oneself is not a good way to gain the respect of the public. Maybe someone should tell them.

  11. I’m going to save this quote for the next time I hear someone on the left bitching and moaning about the Koch brothers. Maybe it will clear the cloud from their eyes a little bit, It is incredibly frustrating that both the left and the right have voiced concern about some of the same abuses by government, yet, at the same time blatantly ignore that we all have these common complaints.

  12. When the attacks on police militarization are coming with equal vigor from the Left and the Right, you can be pretty sure that the tide is turning.

    http://thehill.com/regulation/defense/215207-left-right-unify-behind-push-to-demilitarize-the-police

    Soon, the only people left to defend police militarization will be the statists and the police. As to the latter, they sure do like their toys, don’t they? And once they get them, they want to use them. On us.

  13. The Koch Brothers may have some ideas I do not like, but they create a lot of industries and jobs in this Country and I will take them as an ally over any Democrat I can think of.
    Maybe the only good thing to come from the Ferguson, MO, conflagration is the Right-Left backlash against the Militarized Police. On the Right we know the dangers of localized Storm Troopers. On the Left, they are too stupid to know and too ignorant to recognize what they are giving-up before it is too late.

  14. OK, so when will the Koch Fairies going to wave their magic wands and pour money on the pro-2A groups? Talk is cheap.

  15. The incongruent use of police for a purpose far beyond their capabilities and intended function is a rich source of humor.
    Gilbert and Sullivan exploited this situation in “The Pirates of Penzance” (I recommend the film starring Linda Rondstadt) . They demonstrated the stupidity of sending a troop of constables, armed with billy clubs, to arrest the pirates. The pirates were armed with swords, pistols, muskets, etc. and their ship could safely be presumed to have cannon.
    The obvious rational response would not be to give those constables swords, guns, and a ship, but to call in the British Navy and the Royal Marines.
    Too bad we haven’t learned the lessons made clear in Victorian times.

    All those who want the cops to be a co-equal part of the Armed Forces of the United States repeat after me:

    “Tarantara! Tarantara! Tarantara!”

  16. The Koch Bros have significant financial interests in companies that own and manage private prisons or invest in them. Some of which have 100% occupancy guarantee contracts with the guv.

    Scratch and sniff below the surface fellas.

    Bread and circuses.

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