What A Colossal Waste Of Money

A few days ago Seattle Outcast in one of his comments mentioned how the TSA was expanding their influence out of the airports and hitting the streets in Tennessee. My reaction was I’m sure like everyone else’s , that old Franklinism about security/liberty immediately came to mind, saying to myself ,”Here we go again”.

It is amazing how much leeway a government can be given by a willing populace if that rope is couched in terms of fighting terrorism or making the country safe. I am usually on the other side of this argument, praising the efforts made by law enforcement and those agencies tasked with fighting terror in how tirelessly and effectively they have done their jobs. We have all heard about the several instances over the last decade where terror plots were stopped dead in their tracks, all due to effective police work.

But hearing about TSA stops on the highway, is it a natural inference to assume that they will be stopping people at random, profiling, and throwing the Constitution right out the window, but that was NOT my inference. Just like all the false hysteria perpetrated by the left about the new Arizona immigration laws, how the cops would now be free to profile, to stop cars and people at random solely for the purpose of checking for papers and citizenship status, I knew that was horse shit. For those that bothered to read the bill, Constitutional protections were not infringed on one bit. The precept of “probable cause” was not altered or did away with and the police were still guided by law as to when they could effect a traffic stop.

Same with this new TSA scare:

VIPR (ohhhh, sounds menacing) is operating at truck safety stations. Commercial rigs (trucks, big rigs, implements of husbandry, etc) are governed by more stringent regulations then regular cars, this is due to their size and potential for carnage if crashed. Commercial rigs are required by law to enter these safety stations, they are weighed and visually inspected, and some are required for a random safety inspection, this happens to like every 10th (or so) truck that goes through. So while Highway Patrol mechanics do a cursory (using involving just a few minutes) inspection, TSA is out there with their bomb dog giving the rig a quick sniff, no harm no foul.

While I like the idea of a program that brings awareness of “suspicious” vehicles and gets those truckers out there to keep their eyes open, I don’t think they are fishing in the right pond. I doubt terrorists are going to drive (or transport their explosives) in big rigs, too expensive and too much of a hassle to operate.

I said this was a waste of money because all this stuff is funded by Homeland Security and it is all run on overtime, designed more to show the folks how “on the job” the government is at keeping them safe, but very costly, due to how it is being run. No mention is made in this article that the TSA is stopping regular cars on the highway, that is because they have no authority to do that. Now most counties in California have drug dogs at the access, if a routine traffic stop warrants some probable cause that there are drugs in the vehicle, the drug dog is called for a routine sniff. I would have no problem with this if the TSA wanted to make this a model for vehicle interdiction. Mohammad gets stopped for speeding, he has no ID, car not registered to him, interior is strewn with Arabic printed material,and on the seat is a copy of “Bomb Making for Dummies”, yes, call out the bomb dog, OK by me.

I am glad that the attached video mentioned Timothy McVeigh, this example reenforces everything good about what we expect from our police. McVeigh was stopped by an observant cop for no license plate (probable cause) and during the contact was sharp enough to connect the dots, MeVeigh’s demeanor, stuff inside the van, and his inability to answer even simplest of questions. Sometimes bad guys are caught just like that.

Comments are closed.

  1. Seattle Outcast

    One of the first stories about this to hit had quotes from a TSA official that states than in addition to the commercial vehicles attruck stops, they were going to be stopping passenger cars as well, and it sounded like a lot of them and NOT at truck stops. That means roadblocks.

    This reminds me of Border Patrol stops where they “request” that you submit to a search after they pull you over at a roadblock. Some of those roadblocks are hundreds of miles away from the border, so you really have to wonder. There are a variety of YouTube videos of people pushing back at the BP Agents to identify what crime they are being charged with, if they had a warrant, and reciting their rights against unlawful search and seizure. Generally the BP wants them to wait around for a couple hours while they discuss this bizarre turn of events and get a superior out there to intimidate the driver some more, and the driver tells them no, he won’t be doing that, and leaves.

    You can hear the agents having one or more of the following responses amongst themselves:

    1) It’s one of “those” people, he must be guilty of something
    2) We’re feds, we don’t need warrants
    3) What do we do now?

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  2. richtaylor365 *

    I found this describing VIPR at bus stations, I don’t view this as too onerous or outrageous, but I could not find anything regarding TSA checkpoints or roadblocks, which I would be against if it happens.

    Generally the BP wants them to wait around for a couple hours

    There is a ton of case law here in California regarding the timelessness of traffic stops and what is a reasonable time of intrusion when checking for warrants. In the old days the cops could keep you there for a long time, all under the guise of checking for warrants, not any more. The courts have said that a reasonable time for writing a citation is all the leeway they get, meaning that after say 10, 15 minutes tops, if that warrant check has not come back then they must be released.

    If you come across anything in the future on the subject, TSA checkpoints or them out and about stopping vehicles on the highway, shoot me a PM.

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  3. Seattle Outcast

    The BP stops had a different flavor – first off, they had nothing to go on other than that they set up a roadblock and wanted to randomly perform an intrusive vehicle search without probable cause or a warrant. Second, they were literally hundreds of miles from the border – the odds of finding illegals cruising the interstate in a sedan were extremely slim. Third, they didn’t exactly appear to be interested in looking for illegals – it was a fishing expedition.

    That’s pretty much where I see the TSA going in a few years – permanent roadblocks on the interstate highway system demanding to see travel authorization papers, passports, & licenses and then randomly trashing vehicles while searching for “terrorists”. What you used to hear about in Iron Curtain countries a few decades back….

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  4. Manwhore

    Once again, since you are on the other side of the fence, you see absolutely no way that this could go entirely wrong. And again, you refuse to acknowledge the simple line that reagan warned us about decades ago to be weary of: “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help.'”

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  5. Mississippi Yankee

    Rich,

    I have to disagree with your post title “What A Colossal Waste Of Money”

    I’m i firm believer in ‘it’s never about the money it’s always about the power’.

    And as I mentioned yesterday Tennessee is a willing accomplice in this prelude to fascism.

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  6. Tool

    MeVeigh’s demeanor, stuff inside the van, and his inability to answer even simplest of questions. Sometimes bad guys are caught just like that.

    Not true, McVeigh was arrested and charged with carrying a concealed firearm. He sat in an Oklahoma Jail for some time based on this charge alone, before authorities realized just what he had perpetrated.

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  7. CzarChasm

    Commercial rigs are required by law to enter these safety stations, they are weighed and visually inspected, and some are required for a random safety inspection, this happens to like every 10th (or so) truck that goes through. So while Highway Patrol mechanics do a cursory (using involving just a few minutes) inspection, TSA is out there with their bomb dog giving the rig a quick sniff, no harm no foul.

    While it is true that state LEOs man the weigh stations, they work under the auspices of Department Of Transportation rules. The only time their status as LEO kicks in is if a truck driver blows by an open weigh station, or if probable cause is witnessed/smelled/overheard to make a more in-depth contact with a truck driver in a law enforcement capacity. While we all know that any LEO worth his salt can manufacture probable cause faster than you can say “police brutality,” that doesn’t mitigate the fact that bomb and/or drug-sniffing dogs have no part in DOT safety rules enforcement. They are purely law enforcement tools. Until that probable cause is either witnessed, smelled, overheard, manufactured, or otherwise documented for future scrutiny by DAs, juries, and the courts, there most certainly is harm and fouls in using the dogs to search.

    It is amazing how much leeway a government can be given by a willing populace if that rope is couched in terms of fighting terrorism or making the country safe.

    What is amazing to me is that an American citizen can start a post with the above near the lead-in, and end the same post with “no harm, no foul” when talking about not only law enforcement, but federal law enforcement agencies, completely trashing the 4th Amendment. Amazing, disappointing, disillusioning and disgusting. Instead of it being “no harm, no foul,” you should have said no law means that there can be no fouls, because that’s what you’re standing for. Nothing is out of bounds for law enforcement under your “no harm, no foul” scenario.

    CC

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  8. richtaylor365 *

    I agree with your point about Tennessee being willing accomplices, but it is a waste of money. Much like the Stimulus, it was a lot of money spent for very little payoff. Whether it is a “prelude to fascism” or not, is yet to be determined but I will be keeping an eye on the TSA and their forays outside of airports.

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  9. richtaylor365 *

    My point was simple, sometimes the most heinous of bad guys are caught by the most simplest of interactions, like a traffic stop for not having a license plate.

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  10. richtaylor365 *

    While it is true that state LEOs man the weigh stations

    Depends on what you mean by “man”, LEO’s are present, they are the one’s with police officer powers and can write the citations, but the actual inspectors, those that poke and prod and go underneath looking for stuff are only mechanics, they have no police officer powers.

    The only time their status as LEO kicks in is if a truck driver blows by an open weigh station, or if probable cause is witnessed/smelled/overheard to make a more in-depth contact with a truck driver in a law enforcement capacity.

    Ah, now I see what you mean by “man’, and you are wrong on this. The LEO’s never have their status “kick in”, they are the guys with the badges and the guns, they are always LEO’s, and they don’t do the inspections, mechanics do.

    completely trashing the 4th Amendment

    And judges tasked with adjudicating these searches have said otherwise.

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  11. Seattle Outcast

    And now we have the cops in Michigan that don’t quite get that whole constitution thing as they start setting up roadblocks to check for drugs.

    Seriously Rich, you don’t just get it.

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  12. richtaylor365 *

    Seriously Rich, you don’t just get it.

    Come on SO, be fair. I have been consistent ever since I’ve started writing here that although I have an intimate knowledge of law enforcement and how it works, 1) my first allegiance is as an American citizen and I value my liberties as much as the next guy, and 2) I do not agree with everything the cops do and am the first to point when they cross the line and what should happen to those guys when they do cross the line.

    Re: Michigan and their drug checks, i assume you are referring to this. Here is the important part:

    one that legal experts said will not withstand a court challenge.

    I agree, it won’t stand up. Although courts have validated the use of DUI checkpoints, I don’t like those either, but this to me is pretty egregious.

    Since I have a rudimentary understanding of what the cops can do and what they can’t , understanding that laws can be different in different states and I have been out of the game for about 4 years now, I try to counter balance those that spout off with little understanding of the law in this matters.

    I included in on of my first posts here that it is our job to keep an eye on these bastards and that an educated vigilant citizenry is the first line of defense against governmental over reaches, nothing has changed.

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  13. AlexInCT

    As usual they got lucky. Then they made McVeigh out to be a right wing guy. From what I have heard the guy was just another asshole, with a big problem with government in general, just like Kazinski (the Unabomber), and somehowe they asserted that made him right wing. Just like Hitler, a socialist asshole, was right wing.

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  14. CzarChasm

    Wow rich, way to pick nits. Do you or do you not agree that probable cause is necessary before law enforcement can commence a legal search? Are bomb and drug-sniffing dogs tools of law enforcement or DOT safety inspections? If probable cause is not necessary, then I guess you’re saying it’s made so by the judges who have adjudicated roadside safety inspections as such? Whether it’s a judge or a cop on the beat, eliminating the necessity for probable cause before searches can legally take place is trashing the 4th Amendment, period.

    Your oath was to the Constitution, not to some hack, or group of hacks, wearing black robes, sitting in private and deciding for themselves, and every citizen in the country, which parts of the Constitution they will abide by, and which parts they won’t. That you hide behind their robes like a child hides behind its mommy’s skirt is what I find the most amazing, disappointing, disillusioning and disgusting.

    CC

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  15. CzarChasm

    Rich, can you name one heinous bad guy that’s been caught from any TSA check point in any venue since 9/11/01? Didn’t think so. But no harm, no foul, huh? Pffft.

    The harming and fouling is foisted upon all the law-abiding citizens who have had their pocket knives, nail clippers, sewing scissors, nail files, even shampoo and hair conditioner outright stolen by the federal government, with anything of value being sold on eBay and in other public auctions. It’s downright criminal, from the no-warrant, no-probable-cause search, to the reselling of stolen property by your own government. But you can only comment on whether or not I got the DOT employees mixed up with the state LEOs. And people wonder why cops are losing respect in this country. It’s because way too many of them have your exact same anything-goes mentality, only they still have guns, badges and illegal authority to impose that mentality on the rest of us.

    Sorry if I seem a bit harsh, but I am of the firm belief that there is no harm, no foul in telling the truth.

    CC

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  16. richtaylor365 *

    Wow rich, way to pick nits.

    No picking nits, from your own statements of when their status “kicks in” it sounded like you think LEO’s wore both hats, they don’t.

    . Do you or do you not agree that probable cause is necessary before law enforcement can commence a legal search?

    No, there are legal exceptions to this that I have discussed here a number of times.

    That you hide behind their robes like a child hides behind its mommy’s skirt is what I find the most amazing, disappointing, disillusioning and disgusting.

    And what I find amazing is your misplaced hubris that you, whatever it is you do, somehow know more about the law then those tasked (judges, including SCOTUS) with interpreting it. If you don’t like our system, then go join the OWS group, most of them don’t like the system either.

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  17. richtaylor365 *

    Rich, can you name one heinous bad guy that’s been caught from any TSA check point in any venue since 9/11/01? Didn’t think so

    Nice tactic you have there, asking a question, then answering it yourself.

    As a matter of fact

    that took all of 2 seconds to find.

    See, what really annoys me is that the contempt I have for TSA, reenforced every time I fly anywhere, their unprofessionalism and how they man handle people, that contempt is masked by me having to stick up for them in that they have a job to do. I have said before that disbanding TSA all together and contracting out airport security to private firms, those that know what they are doing, would be a much better way to go.

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  18. CzarChasm

    “America, love it or leave it” was stale before Nam was even over. And this attitude that judges are above being questioned is just as anti-American as your ignoring what your oath was intended to commit you to.

    “Whatever it is I do” is not pertinent to whether or not I can read and understand the English language, which I can and do very well. It is hardly hubris to hold judges, prosecutors, politicians or even former cops accountable to the law, and the law in question is completely and totally unambiguous:

    The Fourth Amendment to The United States Of America Constitution:
    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    THAT’s how I “somehow” know more than the hacks who have usurped the Constitution with their own illegal interpretations (or outright fantasies, as the case may be), because I can read and understand English.

    I don’t guess “hubris” is the right word to describe someone who supports going against the unambiguous nature of that LAW, but it’s certainly something short of conservative, patriotic or law-abiding. In case you’re wondering where the “hubris” comes from for me to say such a thing to you is, it’s called the 1st Amendment, but that’s another lesson for another day. Let’s get you past your allegiance to people wearing black robes and guns and badges first before we tackle such lofty ideals as freedom of speech, thought and expression. Roll-Eyes Smiley

    And one last news flash for ya genius, the courts were never “tasked” with interpreting law, they were tasked with upholding it. They gave themselves the authority to interpret it independently through the wholly manufactured-by-them “legal” axiom known as “judicial review” in Marbury vs. Madison in 1803, and it is the acquiescent, unchallenging, ill-informed mentality such as yours that has built upon that usurpation to the point of making the Constitution little more than expensive toilet paper to this day.

    CC

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  19. richtaylor365 *

    “America, love it or leave it”

    The OWS crowd is not “leaving it”, neither should you, but they (and you) are making an awful lot of noise in their complaints, with no real solutions to go with it.

    “Whatever it is I do” is not pertinent to whether or not I can read and understand the English language

    Yes, and those learned judges, that ya know, actually went to law school and accumulated the experience and expertise through listening to all the arguments, the ones that rendered opinions that don’t meet with your approval, they don’t understand the English language, got it.

    It is hardly hubris to hold judges, prosecutors, politicians or even former cops accountable to the law

    ,

    But it is hubris to say they You know better then Them.

    THAT’s how I “somehow” know more than the hacks who have usurped the Constitution with their own illegal interpretations (or outright fantasies, as the case may be), because I can read and understand English.

    Well, hell, lets just throw out a hundred years of case law because it does not meet with your approval. In Fact, let’s disband SCOTUS, all the federal courts, all the state courts of appeal, and we will just have you render all legal decisions, since you obviously know the law and The Constitution better then all these judges.

    Let’s get you past your allegiance to people wearing black robes and guns and badges first before we tackle such lofty ideals as freedom of speech, thought and expression.

    Emoticons aside, nice touch btw, where on earth did you get the idea that I was against you spouting off your nonsense? But it goes both ways, you are free to say any such thing you like, and I am free to determine it as hubris, that is the way it works.

    I understand the nonsensical bizzaro world you want or think we should have, it’s where:

    1) Citizens who are in the middle of a police contact can all the sudden say ,”Hey, I know my rights, you can’t do that”, even though what is going on has been sanctioned and condoned by the courts as proper and the guy spouting off is full of shit about “knowing his rights”, and because he thinks he knows his rights he can fight back even to the point of violence because he thinks he is in the right.

    2)Police should always decide for themselves whether the laws they are tasked with upholding pass muster with their own ideas on what the Constitution says, and any laws that do not meet this test, well,they do not have to enforce these laws, just the “good” ones.

    3)Individual judges in criminal cases, where a defendant is charged with a crime, that judge is honor bound to apply his on constitutional due diligence, deciding for himself if he agrees with that law, or if a SCOTUS decision 5 years ago authorizing a certain type of search, if the judge does not agree with the finding, he can and should dismiss the case immediately.

    Sorry, but you do not get to pick and choose what laws you think are worthy, and what aren’t. I am all for healthy constitutional challenges for any new police procedure coming down the pike, such as that illegal (at least to me) drug checkpoint in Michigan, but once a decision has been rendered (and appropriate punishments meted out if any existing laws were broken by the cops) it is the law of the land.

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  20. Mississippi Yankee

    rich, in an effort to never admit you’re mistaken you have managed to come off as a right proper fascist.
    IMHO, of course

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  21. CzarChasm

    Yes, and those learned judges, that ya know, actually went to law school and accumulated the experience and expertise through listening to all the arguments, the ones that rendered opinions that don’t meet with your approval, they don’t understand the English language, got it.

    It’s not that they don’t understand English, it’s that they don’t abide by the words they read and likely do understand perfectly well. If all they were doing was misunderstanding, that would be fixable. But it’s the untouchable and unaccountable-to-anyone power they wield that makes their forays into the land of unconstitutionality so dangerous to our liberties. But I wouldn’t expect you to get that. You’re on their side for one thing, and would rather try to figure out a way to throw in words like “hubris” in some twisted, tortured logic to deflect from the point being made. You obviously don’t “got it.” Not even close.

    Well, hell, lets just throw out a hundred years of case law because it does not meet with your approval. In Fact, let’s disband SCOTUS, all the federal courts, all the state courts of appeal, and we will just have you render all legal decisions, since you obviously know the law and The Constitution better then all these judges.

    How about you cite one or two of the “hundred years of case law” so I can scrutinize it for myself, instead of just throwing it out there and expecting me (or anyone else) to take your word for it that it’s as you say? Be forewarned though, even if you do that, I may express disagreement with the courts you cite.

    1) Citizens who are in the middle of a police contact can all the sudden say ,”Hey, I know my rights, you can’t do that”, even though what is going on has been sanctioned and condoned by the courts as proper and the guy spouting off is full of shit about “knowing his rights”, and because he thinks he knows his rights he can fight back even to the point of violence because he thinks he is in the right.

    Wow, you got all that from what I’ve said about judges being wrong before? OK Kreskin, let’s see how far your clairvoyance goes…

    Was there a point at which Kelly Thomas could’ve been in full compliance with the law and fought for his own life, instead of only yelling for his dad and for help from the complacent crowd? I’ll go one further – If Kelly Thomas believed the murdering bastard Manuel Ramos as he stood over him putting his gloves on and telling Kelly, “Now see my fists? They are getting ready to Fuck you up!” would Kelly have been within the law to either run or fight for everything he was worth?

    Your implication seems to be that you think I’m itching for the final showdown between citizenry and government. That is the last thing I want, because I know that it will end much more like the French Revolution than the original American Revolution, and Kelly Thomases will be the norm, or worse, and not the exception. But if you think Kelly was obligated by law to take what happened to him without a fight, you are absolutely clueless. Or, worse than clueless, you still have that code of silence mentality that says basically, “Kill ‘em all and let God sort ‘em out.”

    That said, if it’s me and my rights are being violated, I do assert a right firmly. That would be the 5th Amendment. I would clam up and answer none of their questions except the one that goes, “Are you ready to make your phone call now?” If however, they take my silence as a provocation to start whoopin’ my ass, you’re damn right I’ll defend myself, and unless they further break the law and destroy the memory card in my video camera, I’ll beat the rap in court too. That is, if they also manage to destroy my wife’s cell-phone memory card.

    But I’ve said it before, I am about the most unlikely subject to run afoul of the cops simply because I don’t drink, don’t do drugs, don’t do much of anything outside of my own property except drive to and from work or school. I act my age, and if I do get pulled over, which hasn’t happened for well over 15 years now, I treat the cop with respect and take my lumps (er…umm…meaning a ticket) if they’re coming to me without mouthing off. If asked, I would recommend the same behavior out of anyone. But I will never second-guess someone who fights back when attacked or has the audacity to tell a cop that s/he doesn’t have the right to abuse them in some way.

    2)Police should always decide for themselves whether the laws they are tasked with upholding pass muster with their own ideas on what the Constitution says, and any laws that do not meet this test, well,they do not have to enforce these laws, just the “good” ones.

    Right. Either that, or quit and go find a job that doesn’t make you decide between upholding a solemn oath or enforcing judicial rulings that you know are counter to that oath. But that would require a conscience, a reverence for the sanctity of the Constitution, and it seems that is something in short supply amongst those who can justify any usurpation just so long as some hack in a black robe says it’s OK.

    Sorry, but you do not get to pick and choose what laws you think are worthy, and what aren’t.

    That’s where you’re 100% wrong, rich. I absolutely do get to decide for myself how well or poorly judges and Justices are serving the interests of the people they are sworn to protect the rights of. And I can call ‘em usurpers or Patriots, saints or sinners, saviors or murderers, and there ain’t a damn thing wrong with it. It is very unAmerican of you to suggest that expressing my opinion on such matters is somehow above my station in life. You’d have done well as one of Cornwallis’ courtiers.

    CC

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  22. Manwhore

    Sorry, but you do not get to pick and choose what laws you think are worthy, and what aren’t.

    Yeah, you do, laws are just a popularity contest. Except when you do the fucking government never takes it back if we the people decide we don’t want it. I don’t think you’ve heard a person here say that they want this new reach by the TSA. Not one. If the public doesn’t want it, and the government still does it, what is that called hot shot?

    Just like marijuana laws. I bet if you did a nation wide survey today to see who wanted pot legal, you’d get an overwhelming yes (i’d wager at least 60 percent). However, the government has not only kept it illegal, Obama is threatening the medical marijuana agreement that the state of California made with it’s own citizens.

    The very definition of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Authoritarianism

    Authoritarianism is a form of social organization characterized by submission to authority. It is usually opposed to individualism and democracy. In politics, an authoritarian government is one in which political authority is concentrated in a small group of politicians.[1]

    Yep. The TSA just steps out and announces they’re doing whatever the fuck they want, whether you like it or not…And you’re response is “no harm, no foul.” FUCK THAT.

    How about you cite one or two of the “hundred years of case law” so I can scrutinize it for myself, instead of just throwing it out there and expecting me (or anyone else) to take your word for it that it’s as you say?

    Well, remember wrapped into this quilt of geniuses is such works as the Jim Crowe laws. Having had a judge in the family I wouldn’t say they’re any smarter than anyone else.

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  23. richtaylor365 *

    It’s not that they don’t understand English, it’s that they don’t abide by the words they read and likely do understand perfectly well

    And they, with all their years, experience and expertise in listening to all the arguments (which you did not) would say that they are abiding just fine, and would consider you presumptuous for thinking that you know better.

    But it’s the untouchable and unaccountable-to-anyone power they wield

    When their decisions get overturned at the next level, it sounds to me like they are very “touchable”. Judges make rulings all the time, and those rulings get scrutinized and sometimes overturned, that is the system we have because sometimes they get it wrong.

    How about you cite one or two of the “hundred years of case law” so I can scrutinize it for myself.

    Sure, I’ll give you a couple, keeping it strictly within the parameters of the 4th amendment since that is what you brought up earlier:

    http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/kentucky-v-king/

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brigham_City_v._Stuart

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horton_v._California

    Obviously there are many more available, proving that that “untouchable” thing you mentioned before is not valid since all these involve cases that were originally adjudicated, then touched all the way up the appeals process. And don’t forget that the best and brightest legal scholars rendered opinions a bit different from yours. Some the brightest conservative Constitutionalists that ever graced the bench of SCOTUS were involved in these cases, care to challenge their Constitutional bonafides?

    Wow, you got all that from what I’ve said about judges being wrong before?

    That, and other stuff you have written in the past, like on a 2nd amendment post last month you stated something to the affect that cops and judges took an oath to defend The Constitution and if they come across laws in the course of their duties they find inconsistent with that oath then they are obligated to either quit or not do their duty, something like that, or something like this:

    Right. Either that, or quit and go find a job that doesn’t make you decide between upholding a solemn oath or enforcing judicial rulings that you know are counter to that oath

    And nice touch about bringing Kelly Thomas into the discussion, since I was the one that wrote the post about him being murdered, yeah, I’m on their side.

    But if you think Kelly was obligated by law to take what happened to him without a fight,

    Show me where I said that.

    But that would require a conscience

    So now cops, D.A.s and judges don’t have consciences, nice.

    just so long as some hack in a black robe says it’s OK.

    And that is the system we have in place, they are the ones qualified to make legal decisions, challengeable all the way up the ladder, or do we just trash the system and let you decide what’s right?

    It is very unAmerican of you to suggest that expressing my opinion on such matters is somehow above my station in life

    Where did I call you “un American”? Or is that the same place where I denied you your 1st Amendment?

    a reverence for the sanctity of the Constitution

    In addition to “hubris”, I will add self-righteous. I guess with all those examples I posted earlier and all the cases that went before SCOTUS in the past re: Constitutional issues, those judges that did not side with you and went the other way, none of those have “a reverence for the sanctity of the Constitution”. Somehow, ya know, I think they got a better handle on these issues, having sat there and listened to the arguments and all, then you do.

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  24. Manwhore

    Show me where I said that.

    You jumped your own shark when you said during your post about illegal searches of people’s homes that the public should just “let it happen” and then let the courts iron it out. I’ll dig up your post for you if you want me to. It’s an apt comparison, and one I asked you about in the Kelly Thomas thread. I asked you what your stance is when a cop is trying to kill you. When do you have the right to garner the VERY RIGHTS THAT THE COUNTRY SAYS YOU HAVE?

    Sure, everyone is an idiot except for cops, lawyers and judges to you, but we were born under this flag with certain rights. The authoritarian nature of the government these days, and your complacency yawning at each and every little grab is more than noticed. A cop who feels nothing is wrong about an invasion of the fourth, YET AGAIN.

    One more time: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmEHcOc0Sys

    A FUCKING Marine observes that he fought for the right of others to peacefully assemble, and the only reason it has impact is because it is a Marine. Of course, you ignore all of this evidence of tyranny. You did in the past, you do it now, and you will most likely continue to do so.

    I agree with SO, you just don’t get it. BTW, I love how you toss out comparisons to OWS, and the Arizona Law as a way to discredit those that disagree with you. It’s also noted that anyone you disagree with is filed into the “hippy” category, even though, as a government employee you are more hippy than anyone here (enjoying a multitude of benefits not seen in the private sector and early retirement under California Law). You, sir, are the liberal here. You can chastise OWS all you want, but you are a part of a select system of perks given to a select few. Again, by an authoritarian government. No private citizen voted your salaries as much as a Union voted it for them.

    You didn’t have it right on Mesherle, you didn’t have it right on Arizona, and you don’t have it right now. The only thing you are consistent on is the allowance for cops to be unhinged in searching for that “skerry brown terrist” but really just using it to break down your door unconstitutionally.

    Kelly Thomas died because the police are the authority and no one can question them. Your attitude is suing the Fullerton police department will bring his family peace, and my attitude is nothing will bring him back from the Gestappo killing he had to endure. It is NOT OK to say that peace is when his family gets a settlement. Peace is holding those accountable to the crime in the court of law, which so far the accomplices have not endured.

    So, there are two systems. One for people like you, and one for people like me. People like me better mind all of our Ps and Qs, and people like you can flaunt the rules with impunity (because all of those legal scholars and all protect you). You see no harm in this because nothing can happen to you (in your mind).

    As long as you can sleep at night, this country is still headed in the right direction. Judging by all that I am reading in the news everyday, this country has lost its way, I blame shit like this for it as much as anything else.

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  25. CzarChasm

    And nice touch about bringing Kelly Thomas into the discussion, since I was the one that wrote the post about him being murdered, yeah, I’m on their side.

    Good grief rich, I didn’t say, or even imply, that you were on the murdering cops’ side in the Thomas case. I asked you a very specific question in reply to you saying this:

    I understand the nonsensical bizzaro world you want or think we should have, it’s where:

    1) Citizens who are in the middle of a police contact can all the sudden say ,”Hey, I know my rights, you can’t do that”, even though what is going on has been sanctioned and condoned by the courts as proper and the guy spouting off is full of shit about “knowing his rights”, and because he thinks he knows his rights he can fight back even to the point of violence because he thinks he is in the right.

    So answer the question, did Kelly Thomas have the legal right to not only say, “Hey, I know my rights, you can’t beat me to death,” but also have the right to fight back “even to the point of violence because he thinks he is in the right?” You said it was “bizzaro world” thinking on my part to think what you put in #1 above, so I asked the question to see how far you would take that utterly brainless meme. Now answer it. Who cares that you made the post about two out of six cops getting indicted? You either getting the news before the rest of us, or running faster to the ‘puter to make a post about it has nothing to do with the question. You’ve got two choices; either Kelly would have been within the law to protect his *right* to live by either escaping or defending himself by any means necessary, or he didn’t. Which is it?

    CC

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  26. Manwhore

    According to rich, he did not. He had to let the cops beat him to death and hope that the courts would give his family a settlement. Of course only one cop will go down, but we shoudln’t talk about that. It’s more important that cops be able to search you with complete constitutional impunity.

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  27. CzarChasm

    Well, that’s certainly the impression rich has left, made even stronger by his not answering my question the first time I asked it, and leaving it hanging again for the time being.

    But another weird thing about how this thread has gone is that it’s about TSA expanding its authority to search anyone, anywhere, for any or no reason whatsoever, in each and every case the dogs are used with ZERO probable cause, and when expressed by me that they are acting unconstitutionally, rich said SCOTUS doesn’t agree with me. He further said that I was challenging “100 years of case law” in disagreeing with “them” on that. Part of that discussion was also about the Border Patrol check-points that you brought up Manwhore. So I asked him to cite a bit of that “100 years of case law” that he was relying on, and he gave three citations in cases that were about nothing but exigent circumstances, meaning that the cops had plenty of probable cause to make a contact or enter a house or whatever, but didn’t have time to get a warrant. In all three cases SCOTUS affirmed the cops’ authority to act to either protect people, or prevent the destruction of evidence, or use evidence found against a defendant in an exigent circumstances (no-warrant, but lots of probable cause) search. NONE of his citations had a single thing to do with searches that were based on NOTHING. His “100 years of case law” is completely made up as regards the kind of TSA searches we’re talking about. Dude obviously loves government. The more, the better. The more authority to intrude on anyone’s life, the better. Disgusting.

    CC

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  28. richtaylor365 *

    Good grief rich, I didn’t say, or even imply, that you were on the murdering cops’ side in the Thomas case. I asked you a very specific question in reply to you saying this:

    You clearly misunderstood, or maybe I worded it poorly, either is possible so I’ll try to make the point again.

    1) Citizens who are in the middle of a police contact and think a) that they know their rights, and b) they think that those rights are somehow being infringed so THEY resist to the point of violence, not the cops getting violent. I thought that was obvious the first time. Too many times over the years I’ve either seen with my own eyes or read police reports, in a supervisory capacity, where the most innocuous of a police contact like a traffic stop was escalated to the point of violence (the citizen going off, not the cop) because the citizen mistakenly thought he did not have to comply, such as ,”Show me your license”. If you are going to “know your rights”, then know them properly.

    And regarding Kelly, to reiterate, I think it is disgusting For you to use him as an example of anything since I was more then clear about my feelings when I wrote the post.

    So answer the question, did Kelly Thomas have the legal right to not only say, “Hey, I know my rights, you can’t beat me to death,” but also have the right to fight back “even to the point of violence because he thinks he is in the right?”

    Of course he did, those cops beat him to death, any person on the planet has a duty and obligation to protect himself from eminent harm, from anyone. Apparently you misunderstood the “violence” part of the example above, Kelly does not fall into this area because he did not initiate the violence, but was himself the victim of it.

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  29. richtaylor365 *

    But another weird thing about how this thread has gone is that it’s about TSA expanding its authority to search anyone, anywhere, for any or no reason whatsoever,

    Wrong, the thread was about the TSA not stopping anyone, read it again if you are confused about where and when the TSA comes in to the picture.

    i

    n each and every case the dogs are used with ZERO probable cause

    I guess you totally ignored (or did not understand) the part where I mentioned exceptions to the probable cause rule.

    He further said that I was challenging “100 years of case law” in disagreeing with “them” on that.

    Come on, now you are intentionally (dishonestly) distorting the facts, that statement I made was in reply to your ridiculous comment about you knowing better then all those judges and the hundred years of case law they presided over because you can read and understand English, remember now?

    and he gave three citations

    You asked for some cases spanning that hundred years from those judges you claim don’t understand English that would be in opposition to your point of view, I provided a few and now want to qualify them, great.

    NONE of his citations had a single thing to do with searches that were based on NOTHING.

    and again, if you understand the exceptions to probable cause, part of that hundred years span you dismiss, then you would see that in some instances, probable cause is not needed, but you are the Constitutional expert.

    Dude obviously loves government. The more, the better. The more authority to intrude on anyone’s life, the better. Disgusting.

    nonsense, but par for your course.

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  30. richtaylor365 *

    CC, I’m getting a better handle on your debating style:

    1)Pull stuff out of ass:

    It is very unAmerican of you to suggest that expressing my opinion on such matters is somehow above my station in life

    2)Lie or totally distort the facts beyond what was mentioned, hoping that no one will remember what was actually reported:

    But another weird thing about how this thread has gone is that it’s about TSA expanding its authority to search anyone, anywhere, for any or no reason whatsoever,

    3)Wave your Constitutional credentials around frenetically to the point where people will believe you without doing their own fact checking, and when someone does not agree with your POV, even though they hold The Constitution as reverently as you, get all sanctimonious with stuff like:

    But that would require a conscience, a reverence for the sanctity of the Constitution
    “Whatever it is I do” is not pertinent to whether or not I can read and understand the English language

    I have a tournament to referee today so I will be gone until late evening, if there is anything else you want to add.

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  31. CzarChasm

    Yeah, I’ve got a little to add.

    Wrong, the thread was about the TSA not stopping anyone, read it again if you are confused about where and when the TSA comes in to the picture.

    While we all know that any LEO worth his salt can manufacture probable cause faster than you can say “police brutality,” that doesn’t mitigate the fact that bomb and/or drug-sniffing dogs have no part in DOT safety rules enforcement.

    The above is an excerpt from my first post in this thread. I was talking about the TSA searching vehicles with bomb-sniffing dogs, which you claimed represented “no harm, no foul.” If we haven’t been talking about searches based on nothing more than driving on America’s highways, what is it that you think we’ve been talking about?

    I guess you totally ignored (or did not understand) the part where I mentioned exceptions to the probable cause rule.

    Is one of those exceptions just driving down the road and happening upon a check-point where searches are being conducted with no warrant and upon no probable cause by a federal law enforcement agency? Your word is not good enough for me. Citations please, if that’s what you’re saying. Or quit repeating yourself about exceptions that have nothing to do with the circumstances being discussed if it isn’t.

    Come on, now you are intentionally (dishonestly) distorting the facts, that statement I made was in reply to your ridiculous comment about you knowing better then all those judges and the hundred years of case law they presided over because you can read and understand English, remember now?

    My “ridiculous comment” came after citing the 4th Amendment, and referring to its unambiguous nature, which you and the courts and SCOTUS are happy to weaken by manufacturing ambiguity into it. I intended to imply that I at least adhere better to what I read, if not outright understand what I read better than the hacks who go to work every day thinking their job is to rewrite what the Founders wrote and intended to endure for perpetuity. If you read the Fourth, and then read some of the rulings that have weakened its protections against the citizenry and in favor of a more powerful government, it isn’t even arguable that it’s being trashed. Not unless the person doing the arguing is a lover of bigger and bigger, more and more powerful government, that is.

    You asked for some cases spanning that hundred years from those judges you claim don’t understand English that would be in opposition to your point of view, I provided a few and now want to qualify them, great.

    Well, see, I was under the mistaken impression that it was obvious that I have been talking about the TSA doing road-side searches sans any probable cause or warrants. When I cited the 4th Amendment, I did so in reply to this:

    And what I find amazing is your misplaced hubris that you, whatever it is you do, somehow know more about the law then those tasked (judges, including SCOTUS) with interpreting it. If you don’t like our system, then go join the OWS group, most of them don’t like the system either.

    You called it hubris that I would think it beyond the scope of SCOTUS’s authority to interpret all meaning out of the probable cause clause of the 4th Amendment. I called it simply reading and understanding English. It was in response to that that you stated there was a hundred years of case law contradicting my view of things, which I was not aware of, so I asked you for citations. Everything that I was saying up to that point flowed from the TSA searching vehicles at road-side involuntary stops, so your citations on exigent circumstances justifying no-warrant searches was completely irrelevant to anything being discussed. You seem to have a hard time following along here.

    and again, if you understand the exceptions to probable cause, part of that hundred years span you dismiss, then you would see that in some instances, probable cause is not needed, but you are the Constitutional expert.

    And just as soon as you even make a cursory attempt to connect said exceptions to the TSA doing road-side searches on truckers just doing their jobs (and with the strong potential for expansion to non-commercial vehicles too), then I’ll consider them as a valid challenge to anything I’ve said in this thread. But for now, these unspecified exceptions are nothing more than you trying to baffle us with bullshit. Do the exceptions to which you refer apply to a federal law enforcement agency doing searches on the side of the road without a warrant or probable cause, or not? And if you think they do, then cite them and let us all decide for ourselves if you’re accurately portraying them.

    And regarding Kelly, to reiterate, I think it is disgusting For you to use him as an example of anything since I was more then clear about my feelings when I wrote the post.

    When you wrote the post, there was no discussion of what might have been legal for him to do in the face of the violence being perpetrated against him. I have no idea why it would be “disgusting” for me to ask you to clarify how you felt about that in light of what you said here:

    1) Citizens who are in the middle of a police contact can all the sudden say ,”Hey, I know my rights, you can’t do that”, even though what is going on has been sanctioned and condoned by the courts as proper and the guy spouting off is full of shit about “knowing his rights”, and because he thinks he knows his rights he can fight back even to the point of violence because he thinks he is in the right.

    My point in bringing up Kelly Thomas was that there are a lot of cops out there who couldn’t care less what the law is, or what courts have decided about a citizen’s right of self-defense, even in a contact with a LEO. Certainly Ramos wasn’t thinking in those terms. And maybe I did misunderstand rich, but it seems to me that you always come from the perspective that the cops are in the right, even in the face of me quoting the 4th Amendment and juxtaposing it against the no-warrant/no-probable-cause searches that TSA is conducting in Tennessee right now, coming to a state and town near you soon, which you referred to in your opening post as, “no harm, no foul.” I strongly disagree with your assessment in that regard, and just because you were once a cop, or judges and Justices had to go to school longer than I have to get their jobs, doesn’t preclude me from expressing my disagreement with any of you in strong terms. I’m glad to read that you understand that Kelly had the legal right to defend himself, but what I’d like to also read is that you understand that us citizens out here may indeed know our rights better than the cop who’s in front of us violating them sometimes. I’m a law-and-order guy. I support cops who do their jobs within the legal constraints they’re supposed to work under. But I see those who go beyond those constraints as a terrible danger to our country, and I see the TSA searches in TN as a vivid example of that. If using Kelly Thomas’ case to make an analogy helps me express my concerns, I’m going to do it whether you like it or not. Get over it already.

    CC, I’m getting a better handle on your debating style:

    1)Pull stuff out of ass:

    It is very unAmerican of you to suggest that expressing my opinion on such matters is somehow above my station in life

    How was that pulling anything out of my ass? You said it was “hubris” of me to question the courts in how they have ruled on the 4th Amendment. I say it’s my sworn duty to question any government official who strays from constitutional orthodoxy, and I look to the Founders for orthodoxy, not men and women who came decades and centuries later and decided to nullify what the Founders created. And I say “sworn duty” because I’m a vet who took the same oath as you did to become a cop. And I reaffirmed it 3 years ago at a public Oath Keepers event. But clearly, your suggestion was that I was talking above my station in life. Rather than pulling it out of my ass, I was quite well measured in my response by simply pointing out what you were implying. Most Americans, certainly several around here, would’ve had a few more choice words for that kind of suggestion.

    2)Lie or totally distort the facts beyond what was mentioned, hoping that no one will remember what was actually reported:

    But another weird thing about how this thread has gone is that it’s about TSA expanding its authority to search anyone, anywhere, for any or no reason whatsoever,

    Good Lord rich, how is that a lie or a distortion? Your OP was about the TSA checkpoints, no? The checkpoints are searching trucks for no reason other than they were driving down the road, no? That is an expansion of TSA’s authority, no? I swear, I don’t know why you get your hemorrhoids in such an uproar over such minutia. I haven’t lied about or purposely distorted one damn thing.

    On that last bit, I suppose if I recognize and hold the Constitution as sanctified, I will come off as sanctimonious when talking about it. So be it. I have no “credentials” to wave around, only whatever understanding I have garnered from purposeful learning about it over most of my adult life. I’ll surely not apologize for standing firmly in favor of preserving what little of its power is left. That it seems to bug you says a helluva lot more about you than it does me.

    CC

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  32. richtaylor365 *

    Jesus, do you even remember what you had for breakfast yesterday? Add to the list another irritant to your debating style, when proved you are working from a false premise, you keep on building on that premise, to wit:

    that doesn’t mitigate the fact that bomb and/or drug-sniffing dogs have no part in DOT safety rules enforcement.

    I have already pointed out to you that DOT does NOT “man” Highway Inspection Facility’s, state highway patrols (LOE’s) do, and LOE’s routinely use drug dogs in the performance of their duties, remember now?

    And even your faulty premise about DOT is even more faulty, they do use drug dogs and have a drug interdiction program in place, that’s two errors in one sentence.

    http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/documents/diap.pdf

    I was talking about the TSA searching vehicles with bomb-sniffing dogs, which you claimed represented “no harm, no foul.” If we haven’t been talking about searches based on nothing more than driving on America’s highways, what is it that you think we’ve been talking about?

    I know what you have been talking about, the utter nonsense that , “ TSA expanding its authority to search anyone, anywhere, for any or no reason whatsoever”. Where on earth did you get the idea that the TSA was searching anyone, everywhere, for no reason whatsover? It certainly was NOT in the link I provided, do you have another link you can share that backs this up? As far as I know, TSA officers do NOT have police officer powers, they do not have the authority to stop anyone (or set up checkpoints) so your entire premise from the start is faulty. Look at that video I provided, did you see any TSA officials with badges or guns? The ONLY law enforcement arm of the TSA is the ASO program (air marshals).

    Is one of those exceptions just driving down the road and happening upon a check-point where searches are being conducted with no warrant and upon no probable cause by a federal law enforcement agency?

    Again, faulty memory on your part, which makes having any type of meaningful dialogue with you doubly difficult. Do you remember what I said earlier about the Michigan drug checkpoint or DUI checkpoints in general? Read it all again if you need to jog your memory. So now you should know my position on checkpoints, which makes this:

    Your word is not good enough for me

    Nonsensical

    I intended to imply that I at least adhere better to what I read

    Maybe, but what you sounded like was snooty sanctimonious know it all, challenging some of the greatest legal minds in the last hundred years because you can understand English and “abide” by (how you interpret it) The Constitution much better then they can, and anyone that does not share your views, somehow they don’t have the reverence for the document that you do, wow. Some constitutionalists, trashing one third of our federal government (along with all the state courts) because you think you know their job and would be better at it then they are.

    And just as soon as you even make a cursory attempt to connect said exceptions to the TSA doing road-side searches on truckers just doing their jobs

    They are not doing “roadside searches”, for the nth time.

    Do the exceptions to which you refer apply to a federal law enforcement agency doing searches on the side of the road without a warrant or probable cause, or not?

    Are you under the mistaken notion that the TSA can only operate in airports? TSA stands for what again? Go to their website and you can see for yourself where they can legally operate.

    Let me ask you this? TSA run metal detectors at airports, are they an infringement of your 4th Amendment protections? How about those wand metal detectors at sporting events and concerts? How about when you drive your car and pull at the curbside picking somebody up at the airport and the guy with his bomb dog walks by and gives your car a sniff? That computer you type on was probably transported from site to store by rail, you don’t think the TSA drug dogs go through train stations and pick up points? And if sniffing the train is OK, why not the truck that picked up the computer, that is what we are talking about, TSA dogs giving that truck a sniff at the inspection facility.

    And maybe I did misunderstand rich, but it seems to me that you always come from the perspective that the cops are in the right

    Alright let’s get serious here. One of the reasons I write about legal issues and those affecting law enforcement is to try and offer perspective from “the other side”. I’ve written about this before, but since you are relatively new, you probably don’t know, but I did 4 years as a Field Training Officer in LA. The main job (aside from showing the new guys the RIGHT way to do things) of an FTO is to root out those individuals not suited for police work and provide proper documentation to justify them getting the axe. I also did a several year stint in Sacramento in Internal Affairs, where I reviewed cases of police misconduct and wrote the termination packages. Believe me, I know ALL about police misconduct. If there is any possible way for a cop to screw up, I’ve seen it. That was the main reason I wrote the Kelly Thomas post, those guys (all of them) deserve to be put away for a very long time. Bad cops ruin it for the good cops because it makes their job that much harder and I try to bring these things up often as mea culpas for any biases others infer I have towards the cops.

    doesn’t preclude me from expressing my disagreement with any of you in strong terms.

    Sure, express away. And in me “taking the side of the judges”, this in no way gives them a free pass, on anything. Everyone is fallible, everyone makes mistakes, and wrt to jurisprudence, that is why we have the appeals process, sometimes they get it wrong.

    But I see those who go beyond those constraints as a terrible danger to our country, and I see the TSA searches in TN as a vivid example of that.

    That is why if you recall my comments on the Michigan drug checkpoints and DUI checkpoints (and other posts that I have written on this topic) you would see that I am on your side, mostly. I like my liberties as much as the next guy. Remember me saying earlier in this post, “We will keep an eye on these guys”? Right now TSA is NOT making roadside checks, they are not stopping cars on their own or doing their own checkpoints, if and when that happens then I will be right along side with you in fighting that.

    You said it was “hubris” of me to question the courts in how they have ruled on the 4th Amendment.

    No, I said it was hubris for you to think that because you “Understand English” you somehow can “abide” better then they can.

    I was quite well measured in my response by simply pointing out what you were implying

    The “Un American” stuff is just crap, you know it. It’s like the “Dissent is patriotic” harangue, judiciously applied to our side but not theirs. We can disagree on stuff, but don’t go there.

    I don’t know why you get your hemorrhoids in such an uproar over such minutia.

    Because about 80% of that sentence is a “Distortion”. The TSA is not doing roadside checks, the parameters (and limitations of what they are doing and where) were clearly spelled out in the post.

    That it seems to bug you says a helluva lot more about you than it does me.

    Your reverence for The Constitution” is not what bugs me, what amuses me is the simplistic misguided notion that if someone disagrees with you on application, that makes him not as good a constitution warrior as you are. I wonder if you would have that attitude with the SCOTUS justices when they make a ruling you don’t agree with, that those guys somehow can’t “abide” to the document as well as you can. You think it’s possible that those justices that went the other way have a reverence to The Constitution on par with you but just have a difference of opinion? Reminds me of some of those sanctimonious atheists/liberals/AGW adherents (pick one) , who can’t live and let live, can’t respect the other side as having a difference of opinion, no, they go off on tangents of superiority, more advanced and evolved, more open minded, and more scientific.

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  33. CzarChasm

    Your reverence for The Constitution” is not what bugs me, what amuses me is the simplistic misguided notion that if someone disagrees with you on application, that makes him not as good a constitution warrior as you are. I wonder if you would have that attitude with the SCOTUS justices when they make a ruling you don’t agree with, that those guys somehow can’t “abide” to the document as well as you can. You think it’s possible that those justices that went the other way have a reverence to The Constitution on par with you but just have a difference of opinion?

    Rich, when I cited the 4th Amendment, I specifically attempted to draw your attention to the unambiguous nature of it. I do not see in the Constitution where “opinion” has much of anything to do with a Justice discharging his/her duties. There is an interpretive component to a Justice’s job, but that does not mean that they are “tasked” with interpreting that which needs no interpretation. It means that they must seek to interpret the intent of the Founders where one part of the Constitution conflicts with another part. It doesn’t mean they get to just write the probable cause part of the 4th out of existence just because it makes cops’ jobs easier, or makes it easier for courts to get through trials or what have you. If you could point out the “wiggle room” in the text of the 4th Amendment that these learned men and women based their rulings on that served to weaken the citizens’ protections and strengthen the government’s authority, then I’ll give a listen to you on my “hubris” for thinking they’ve overstepped their bounds. But that wiggle room just ain’t there, and still sorry if it bugs you, but I know it ain’t there because I can read it and understand the words well enough to know that it ain’t. There is no passage within the Constitution that says that a Supreme Court Justice has the authority to make up intent, or alter unambiguous language based only on their opinions of the prudence of such rulings. So I don’t care if their opinions differ from mine, I care only that they abide by the law that grants them the authority to operate in any governing capacity.

    And yes, I do have problems with using dogs at airports etc. Metal-detecting wands too. Unless, of course, the dogs and wands are supplied, deployed and operated by private concerns, such as airlines or bus companies, whatever. When government employees are using them, they are on a fishing expedition, period, and that is verboten under any reasonable reading of the 4th Amendment.

    I didn’t read the link or thread or whatever it was about the Michigan DUI checkpoints. If I missed something pertinent to this thread because of not reading that, my apologies, but I am forced to pick and choose what, and how much, I read because of fairly significant problems with my eyes. Not trying to make excuses or snivel about my problems, but it is what it is. In regards to that, I guess I have to admit that I did skim over a lot of what you wrote and missed some pertinent points you made concerning the roadside stops and in what capacity TSA is involved. I’m not exactly convinced that whatever I missed, or misunderstood as the case may be, invalidates any points or opinions I’ve expressed about the 4th Amendment, but I will admit that you are entitled to expect that someone responding to something you wrote should do their best to grasp it fully, and I did fall short on that score. For that, I apologize.

    CC

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  34. richtaylor365 *

    Rich, when I cited the 4th Amendment, I specifically attempted to draw your attention to the unambiguous nature of it.

    The problem, CC, is that the 4th Amendment is ambiguous, or at least it’s application in society. Why do you think there is so much case law regarding it? When you have phrases like ,” guards against unreasonable searches and seizures” (what’s reasonable and what isn’t, and who makes that call?), “sanctioned and supported by probable cause” (you yourself referenced how easy it was to manufacture probable cause, hence it’s very ambiguity), and ,” Search and arrest should be limited in scope” (what’s limited in scope and what isn’t and who makes that call?), reasonable and prudent men (justices) can differ widely in exactly what those phrases mean.

    I do not see in the Constitution where “opinion” has much of anything to do with a Justice discharging his/her duties

    Personally, I don’t see how you can avoid it.

    It doesn’t mean they get to just write the probable cause part of the 4th out of existence just because it makes cops’ jobs easier, or makes it easier for courts to get through trials or what have you.

    Agreed, and if you go back to any and all posts I’ve written on the 4th Amendment, including those about The Exclusionary Rule, you will see that I am a big probable cause guy. I never said they should have it easy, only that they get it right, where their actions are consistent with case law and as I’ve already pointed out, there is a ton of case law on the 4th Amendment.

    If you could point out the “wiggle room” in the text of the 4th Amendment

    The wiggle room, or ambiguity, is pointed out above. Guide lines like reasonable, probable cause, and limited in scope are nice to have, but the individual judge or justice must determine for himself if in this case those burdens were met. If they were then the case goes forward, if not then it’s thrown out. And honest intelligent judges, all with a reverence for The Constitution, can differ on this, hence, all the case law on the subject.

    For that, I apologize.

    I appreciate that. And just for the record, nothing about your adherence to the precepts of The Constitution bugs me, on the contrary, I wish more people (cops, judges and politicians) were equally as passionate about it’s sanctity. But where I think you miss the mark is in how easily you dismiss those that disagree with you in application. This is why we have judicial panels and the appeals process, because reasonable and prudent men can differ in how that document speaks to them. And differing parties should not challenge the other’s credentials or commitment, because they differ.

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  35. richtaylor365 *

    Yep, it sound like that guy has a good case, the TSA did overstep their authority. The ACLU attorney nails it:

    Airport searches are the most common encounters between Americans and law enforcement agents. That’s why it is so important for TSA agents to do the job they were trained to do and not engage in fishing expeditions that do nothing to promote flight safety. It is, of course, very important to ensure the safety of flights and keep illegal weapons and explosives off planes. But allowing TSA screeners to conduct general purpose law enforcement searches violates the Constitution while diverting limited resources from TSA’s core mission of protecting safety.

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