Monday, August 30, 2010

Thank you, sir! May I have another?

It appalls me that one in five respondents is apparently a soft and toothless creature whose ingrained response to a claim of authority is a brief spot of confusion as to whether it's more appropriate to proffer its throat or its rump.

I don't get it. I mean, I was taught that an ornery, independent streak was a hallmark of Americans; that kowtowing and forelock tugging was something foreigners did. I was a teenager before I found out that e pluribus unum wasn't actually Latin for "You ain't the boss of me!"

Over the years, the decay of our national case of the stiff-knee has been blamed on everything from popery to communism to letting the TeeWee networks show Princess Di's wedding, but I don't pretend to know what the root cause is, just that I'm against it, whatever it is.


Living in Babylon said...

Probably would have looked uglier if there was an option for "lol, wuts that?" and people were forced to answer truthfully.

When asked if voter ignorance and apathy was affecting our nation's direction in a recent poll I just made up, at least 42.78832% of respondents selected "I don't know and I don't care"

John B said...

maybe the 20% are bad cops and worse politicians.

Did'ja think of that darling?

Joseph said...

You'll have idiots who think that as long as you don't have anything to hide, it's OK if the 5-0 does as they please. It doesn't take much of a shift of use for this to go horribly wrong.

As for why people think like this? I'd hazzard to guess that as the nation prospers, folks have more to lose and are willing to give up their freedoms to keep their precious belongings.

Blackwing1 said...

The root cause? For about 100 years the Fabian-style collectivists (starting with the organizational skills of John Dewey) have been systematically destroying the education system which used to actually teach children to read, write, do arithmetic, and imbue them with some shred of historical background.

It's now simply an indoctrination system intended to wipe out any shred of individualism...and it works.

Blackwing1 said...

Perhaps you were channeling Groucho:

I don't know what they have to say,
It makes no difference anyway,
Whatever it is, I'm against it.
No matter what it is or who commenced it,
I'm against it.

Your proposition may be good,
But let's have one thing understood,
Whatever it is, I'm against it.
And even when you've changed it or condensed it,
I'm against it.

I'm opposed to it,
On general principle, I'm opposed to it.

[chorus] He's opposed to it.
In fact, indeed, that he's opposed to it!

For months before my son was born,
I used to yell from night to morn,
Whatever it is, I'm against it.
And I've kept yelling since I first commenced it,
I'm against it!

Ritchie said...

Are not police station parking lots public property? Those widgits can't be all that expensive in bulk.

Unknown said...

CNN has an international audience, and even our worst enemies get to vote in this "non-scientific poll".

Wake me up when Rasmussen runs this question.

Roberta X said...

Ah, my hero!

Brad K. said...

The courts still contend to operate on "the rule of law", that is, what is introduced by a sworn witness. Mostly.

So why isn't the enforcement arm of law, including the feds, bound by requiring eyeball evidence only to be admissable? That is, no radar guns, no traffic cameras (and shortening yellow lights to increase tickets and revenue for running red lights, as eight cities in the US contemplated last spring).

On the other hand, no one raised a stink about using finger prints or DNA as abusing privacy, nor using radio to call ahead of the latest bozo trying to out-drive a law enforcement vehicle. No one seems to care that any Tom, Dick, Harry, bank, credit union, employer, can access databases of information including credit history, or that the states and IRS routinely exchange information to "make sure" you filed all your taxes nicely.

Not much ruckus was raised about letting LEO follow cell phone GPS locators without a warrant, and while the Feds might have a listing of cell phone users, the general citizen can't look up the neighbor's phone number.

One of the (few) insidious bits of the recent US 2010 Census was taking address and phone number (quite often a cell phone) of the respondent (person answering the questionnaire). While in the past the US Census has had an excellent record of keeping Census data confidential, even from the Feds, I have trouble believing that this administration will let that continue, nor do I believe that Homeland Security hasn't been breaking into the data on a routine basis.

I wonder - the feds have never had a database they haven't compromised or mis-published. How long will it take to get most police departments access to the GPS tracking - and how long for the criminals to set up detectors for the kinds of vehicles that they want the most? Drive into the wrong chop-shop venue, and within moments the local enterprise has a team headed for your first traffic light or where you park. This could be a golden opportunity for the unscrupulous. Or even the protestor, assassin, insurance salesmen, union organisor thug, etc.

Put the GPS tracking on public transportation vehicles. That works for me.

staghounds said...

1. How many of that 80% can name the Supreme Court?

2. I expect that 20% of the people are more concerned with catching criminals than with the erosion of Constitutional rights.

This is, as you point out, a new development. The "Greatest Generation" wouldn't have stood for mass violation of liberty rights just to stop a few saboteurs, nor would Theodore Roosevelt's heirs a generation before.

And a Revolutionary veteran would have been horrified at the idea of using federal authority to steal private property in violation of a Supreme Court order!

Who/ whom is always an important distinction.

og said...

Everyone has a boss, everyone has someone they must please. What you're seeing is not people losing their backbone, but people who never had one and are anxious to find the biggest bully in the schoolyard to attach themselves to as toadies.

theirritablearchitect said...

All of this just reinforces my thoughts about exactly who needs killing, when the time comes.

It ain't all just the politicians, ya know.

bluesun said...

Honestly, I'm surprised it's so low.

skidmark said...

@ Joseph said...
[quote[.... (some judicious snipping)

As for why people think like this? I'd hazzard to guess that as the nation prospers, folks have more to lose and are willing to give up their freedoms to keep their precious belongings.[/quote]

'Scuse me, but how long has it been since the nation has prospered? And as for me, the more "stuff" I accumulate the more I'm inclined to tell everybody, but especially the hired goons, to keep both their hands and their noses out of my "stuff". I was pretty much in that camp when I had hardly any "stuff" but the feeling grew as the amount of my "stuff" grew.

And now that the nation is no longer prospering, the notion grows even stronger. I, unlike many others, do remember history.

stay safe.

wv= oxabl: when the oxymoron becomes possible?

Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

"Honestly, I'm surprised it's so low."


"Over the years, the decay of our national case of the stiff-knee has been blamed on everything from popery to communism to letting the TeeWee networks show Princess Di's wedding, but I don't pretend to know what the root cause is, just that I'm against it, whatever it is."

Decay of the national stiff-knee? Heck, it's almost completely rotted away. How else do you think we got a President with a severe tendency to fold between the ankle and the hip, and a desire to make everyone else to the same?

wv: legis. There are about a dozen ways I could go with that, I just can't decide on which one.

Brad K. said...


"legis" would be a pair of tie-down holsters, in Lycra, from Danskins.


David said...

There are a lot of people out there in the world who are frightenly ignorant. I was seated on a jury a few years ago. The trial took one day, deliberation took another.

During the trial it came out that when the arresting officer asked the defendent to step out of his car the defendent told the officer to "F$%* Off!"

When we first gathered for jury deliberation our foreman asked "Lets see if we can save some time, on count 1 - misdemeanor possession - does anyone think the defendant is innocent?"

One juror, immediately spoke up "Oh, we can make it even easier than that. We all know that anyone who would use language like that man used to that police officer is obviously guilty of anything they want to charge him with."

What was even scarier was that 6 other people in that room sat there and nodded their heads in agreement with the woman.

Anonymous said...

Jurors seem eager to punish anyone they get on their menu these days. I think part of it is the "can't happen to me" projection.
I was sitting in a faculty meeting when one of the teachers mentioned she had jury duty on the first day of classes and "God help whoever is making me come down there to waste a day sitting on a jury."

Anonymous said...

This bothers me. The apathy and ignorance of the population is growing. The powers that be know this, and they are counting on it. Couple that with today's LE and you have a recipe for disaster. Especially given all these neat new tools to use, backscatter X-ray, ability to plant GPS without a warrant. It's scary. This past 2 weeks I've read more stories on LE and abuse of power than I have in the past. It's way past the " it's alarming " stage. Folks need to wake up, and if necessary, bust someones ass.

1894C said...

From the article:
"You have to take measures -- to build a fence, to put the car in the garage" or post a no-trespassing sign." "If you don't do that, you're not going to get the privacy."

David Rivkin, former Justice Department attorney.

Now that is some good advice...

Let's all take heed.



Bubblehead Les. said...

Well, if they want to know my habits, all they have to do is ask Google and follow my on-line shopping. No need to see how many hours I am stuck in traffic because some SHOVEL -READY STIMULUS ROAD PROJECT WON'T LET ME GO DOWN A PERFECTLY GOOD INTERSTATE THAT WAS JUST REPAVED 2 YEARS AGO! On my property w/o a warrant? How much did you want to pay my lawyers? I would LOVE to see how much this crap would fly when it started going through the Federal Courts Fans. As for the 20%, Remember the old saying: "you're either part of the Problem or part of the Solution?" The 20% is the Problem, and I have a Solution, courtesy of Larry and Jerry : "Evolution in Action".

Tam said...

"I would LOVE to see how much this crap would fly when it started going through the Federal Courts Fans."

It just did go through a Federal Circuit Court of Appeals. Hence the reason everybody's so agitated.

Montie said...


As a cop and one of those whom this ruling would supposedly benefit (at least as far as theoretically making my job easier), I have to say that I was apalled when this ruling came down. Some will say "don't worry it's only aplicable in the area of the country served by that circuit", but I can tell you from experience that agencies with a proclivity for this type of investigative activity will now push the envelope regardless of what part of the country they are in.

This will probably make its way to the SCOTUS and unfortunately I'm not sure which way they will go on it.