The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Ferguson To Holder: “Bring It. Yourself. Buzz Aldrin Could Calibrate You.”

Posted on | March 7, 2015 | 40 Comments

by Smitty

Attorney General Eric Holder said Friday the Department of Justice is ready to take any and all steps that are needed to reform the Ferguson, Mo., police department, including the potential dismantling of the force.

But was it really racism?

The complex question of the relationship between wealth and race comes into play here, but it might reasonably be said that this practice — of police and prosecutors and courts together — disproportionately affects black communities not because they are black, but because they are poor. They do not have the means to escape the justice apparatus, unlike the comparatively wealthy, who can pay a fine and be done with the matter — or hire an attorney, and inconvenience courts that prefer the ease of collecting fees to the challenge of arbitrating cases. To this effect, Balko quotes Thomas Harvey, an attorney for ArchCity Defenders, a St. Louis–based legal-aid group: “These are people who make the same mistakes you or I do — speeding, not wearing a seatbelt, forgetting to get your car inspected on time. The difference is that they don’t have the money to pay the fines. . . . When you can’t pay the fines, you get fined for that, too. And when you can’t get to court, you get an arrest warrant.”

It’s not a bad thing to have somebody watching the watchmen. However, after six years of Creep Show Holder wanting to have a conversation about race with every blade of grass in the land, I simply would trust him to tell me the time of day.

And what about the Governor of Missouri? It looks like Nixon is operating slightly above a vegetative state. Is he anxious to avoid the Menendez treatment? It seems yet another example of federalism gone off the rails that there is this abject tool of an Attorney General running around like some kind of authority figure.

It’s time to show the federal bully some resolve. In some pre-Obama America, they’d provide Snidely Whiplash a bit of needful attitude adjustment.


40 Responses to “Ferguson To Holder: “Bring It. Yourself. Buzz Aldrin Could Calibrate You.””

  1. OrangeEnt
    March 7th, 2015 @ 3:02 pm

    Does Ferguson have a county Sheriff? If so, all he/she has to do is detain Holder if he sets foot in the county. Problem solved! And prolly another one started….

  2. HeatherG
    March 7th, 2015 @ 3:08 pm

    I believe theres a lot in Ferguson that no one really knows about. Because putting all this together just doesn’t fully add up at all.

  3. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 3:50 pm

    Ferguson is an incorporated city within the county of St. Louis Missouri. It’s possible the county sheriff has no jurisdiction. In incorporated cities but not towns in Virginia those cities are entirely separate political entities. The problem with DoJ is it uses disparate impact as prima facia evidence of discrimination. This should be illegal. Having said that Ferguson is one of about 89 or so tiny ”cities” around the city of St. Louis within but not part of the county of St. Louis. Ferguson is nine tenths of a square mile in size and therefore can’t have a sufficient tax base. It has it’s own court system the fines from which generate about 25% of the city’s revenue. It can’t afford a police department let alone a reformed one. There’s no way it has or can raise the money for the reforms Holder is demanding of it’s police or courts.

  4. gastorgrab
    March 7th, 2015 @ 4:21 pm

    What crime is the ‘collective Fergeson police department’ being charged with?

    What legal standard has been exceeded by the ‘pattern of behavior’ exhibited by the Fergeson PD? What criminal or civil code has been violated?

    A murder trial almost requires that a dead body be produced. Circumstantial evidence alone is not always sufficient to convince a jury that a crime has been committed. A person simply may be missing. Evidence without ‘proof that a crime was ever committed’ is not evidence of anything.

  5. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 4:59 pm

    Non of that matters to Holder in particular or the Department of Injustice in general. The application of disparate impact is being used as sole and irrefutable proof of discrimination, from school discipline to requiring High School diplomas in hiring to the enforcement of law all across this country.

  6. gastorgrab
    March 7th, 2015 @ 5:14 pm

    It seems that all of ‘Social Justice’ represents a set of rules that were never debated by congress, and never signed into law by the executive branch.

    There isn’t even an executive order (magic wand) to set them as the official standard of the United States.

    ‘Diversity’ is not the law. There is no official social expectation of government that Americans must comply with. Social Justice is NOT Legal Justice.

  7. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 5:30 pm

    Indeed they simply decree that a set of non-contextual statistics mean X and that’s that.

  8. Daniel Freeman
    March 7th, 2015 @ 5:35 pm

    Yeah, my BIL mentioned something about that the last time I was in Virginia, and it seemed alien to me. I’m pretty sure that in Oregon, the sheriff’s office can enforce laws anywhere in the county, and merely chooses to conserve resources by not duplicating the efforts of municipal police departments. I would expect the latter to be the more common model.

  9. gastorgrab
    March 7th, 2015 @ 6:17 pm

    No judge or jury required.

  10. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 6:26 pm

    Most incorporated cities are not in the county but are surrounded by the county. If the county supplies public services such as schools and police there is no point in incorporating. In Virginia or NC if the jurisdiction is a town it may have it’s own police force (quite common) but they still use the county schools. One of the problems of living in a town rather than a city is one pays taxes to both town and county.

  11. DeadMessenger
    March 7th, 2015 @ 6:55 pm

    I haven’t investigated this or anything, but I live in an incorporated city, and if anything, the sheriff’s office has MORE jurisdiction than the city police. They are also fully tricked out by DHS, they act like they’re some kind of…I don’t know…paramilitary, and 100% of the citizens are dangerous armed criminals who ought to be waterboarded at Gitmo. They have a hive mind, seems like. Versus the city cops are like regular cops, but are the b1tches of the sheriff’s department. This is just what I see from observation; may or may not reflect actual reality.

  12. DeadMessenger
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:03 pm

    Sickening, isn’t it? Under the common sense rules of slippery slope, the DOJ is giving us a preview of their plans for all US police departments in the new, improved Police State™.

    When you use BS, made up justifications and get away with it, why stop with Ferguson, after all? Power corrupts, and all that. Don’t you agree, comrade?

  13. theBuckWheat
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:09 pm

    In October 1988, Nobel poet Tony Morrison wrote an article in the New Yorker titled “Clinton as the first black president”, saying he was “Blacker than any actual black person who could ever be elected in our children’s lifetime.” What then is “black”?

    When Time magazine’s Jack White calls Supreme Court Justice Thomas, “the scariest of all the hobgoblins”, saying “Washington seems to be filled with white men who make black people uneasy”, than what is “black”?

    It should be more than clear now that race has become a liberal proxy for ideology. When liberals assume that anyone who is conservative Christian is “white” and everyone else is “of color” or “black”, they can then put on the mantle of moral righteousness. When a person objects to this meme, it must be “racism”. That of course, is a barefaced lie.

  14. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:11 pm

    What state are you in?
    In theory at least Sheriffs departments should be more accountable as they are elected officials. If they want to be reelected, and who doesn’t, they can’t afford to let their deputies run amok. Many counties such as Fairfax and Arlington in VA and Gwinnett here in GA have a county police force. In theory in these counties the sheriff’s dept may have LE responsibilities but in practice they just run the courts and the county jail. I live in the town of Buford which straddles Hall and Gwinnett. I live in Hall and if I called 911 a Hall county deputy would respond

  15. Daniel Freeman
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:14 pm

    She’s in Florida.

  16. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:16 pm

    There are no slippery slopes, merely cliffs that we step off of. The various outcroppings that smack us on the way down create the illusion of slidding.

  17. Daniel Freeman
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:17 pm

    Fascinating! Our model is more based around the principle of subsidiarity than exclusivity. We even have a regional government (spanning counties) called Metro, and a lot of cities contract with the sheriff’s office for police that are really re-branded deputies. I really don’t know how all the overlaps are accounted for, but now that I think about it, it must be complicated.

  18. theBuckWheat
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:32 pm

    A lot of the burden for this lies at the feet of government at all levels. A single mother works at a low paying job (thanks to ObamaCare) and must drive to work. Someone dings her car in the parking lot and knocks out a tail light. It will take her some time to save enough to pay for its repair, but she drives to work anyway. The Ferguson Police stop her on the way home from work and cite her for the broken light. She doesn’t have enough money to pay the fine, and then spends a night in jail when stopped again. She loses her job because she didn’t show up for work. She cannot afford the jail cost, etc.

    Question: was the Ferguson Police department racist for citing her for a tail light violation? Was traffic court racist for fining her beyond her ability to pay?

    Me: race only enters this by inverting logic. My heart goes out to people in this situation. But such “logic” stands on the assumption that black citizens are going to be poor because they are black and that entitles them to being exempt. Government must not grind citizens into the ground but it cannot allow them to be exempt from the law either. I fear that the primary lesson from Ferguson has been that if a big enough crowd does something, they can create their own exemptions.

  19. Daniel Freeman
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:37 pm

    Short story: IIRC, Finland made traffic fines a percentage of income — so when the head of IKEA got pulled over, he moved the company to Sweden.

    It’s been awhile and I don’t feel like looking it up, so I encourage any skeptics to fact-check me.

  20. RKae
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:38 pm

    “…I simply would trust him to tell me the time of day.”


  21. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:42 pm

    What state?

  22. Daniel Freeman
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:42 pm


  23. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:43 pm

    Well that explains alot.
    PS What advantages does becoming an incorporated city bestow? Does it make a city more independent from the county for instance.

  24. Daniel Freeman
    March 7th, 2015 @ 7:44 pm


  25. Daniel Freeman
    March 7th, 2015 @ 8:02 pm

    What advantages does becoming an incorporated city bestow?

    I’m not sure, but the story of Damascus probably has some clues. No time now, will look it up later.

  26. Nomadic100
    March 7th, 2015 @ 8:16 pm

    It is obvious that there are racial differences – many, in fact. Blacks are better athletes than whites in football and basketball. Maybe other sports, too. Blacks are by far the majority in those sports at the Division I level in college and in the pros, far exceeding their 13% of the general population. A recent study in N.J. on I-95 which is scientifically valid showed that blacks speed more than whites. As opposed to the sports example, speeding is not a matter of ability, but must result from other factors. Maybe the same thing occurs in Ferguson. Murder statistics show blacks commit more murders per capita (especially against other blacks) than whites – again doubtless the result of a complex set of variables.

    So, without meaningful analysis, the DOJ report on Ferguson is likely to be seriously flawed. Ferguson should litigate, or, if it is too costly, disband the city police department and contract with the county for police services.

  27. Nomadic100
    March 7th, 2015 @ 8:24 pm

    The notion that “disparate impact” implies racism must be fought vigorously. If it succeeds in becoming a legitimate criterion for regulating law enforcement entities (not to mention other matters such as school discipline) it will become a serious cause of diminishing morale among law enforcement officers AND a contributing factor to escalating numbers of crimes committed by minorities – and we know who they are. That is not helpful for any group, especially the minorities. Consider what the Great Society has done to the black family, and you will get my point.

  28. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 8:55 pm

    Incorporation protects communities within Oregon’s regional supra authorities from encouraging and facilitating the annexation of (I presume) county communities into larger expanding urban areas. In Damascus’s case from being annexed by Portland. Communities are doing this in many areas of the country. One reason for doing this is to avoid becoming tax slaves to city’s public union pension funds. In theory Your Metro has the advantage of pooling regional resources such as water treatment making such services more efficient and less costly. Many places engage in similar regional cooperation such as the DC area. Your Metro area seems to have much more coercive power however. Giving actual power to such entities is inherently dangerous for smaller local communities as the larger urban areas needs will always take precedence and provide the urban governments more opportunity to loot suburbanites.

  29. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 9:14 pm

    I certainly hope that story is true.

  30. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 9:28 pm

    The problem is Ferguson relies on fines for funding and measures police performance based on ticket writing counts. The problem for the poor in Ferguson is that they are more vulnerable to fine escalating scenarios. Making a sliding scale for fines based on race or income is injustice plain and simple. One thing I’m sure of is that when the leadership gives a particular officer credit for writing the most revenue generating tickets they don’t ask for a racial breakdown of who got those tickets. This whole system is based on green not black and white. The riots in Ferguson weren’t about taillight tickets they were about entitlement, apparently the entitlement to commit strong arm robbery.

  31. Adobe_Walls
    March 7th, 2015 @ 9:29 pm

    Too late.

  32. DeadMessenger
    March 7th, 2015 @ 11:09 pm

    I’m in the state on the event horizon of total chaos and insanity, Florida. Which probably explains everything.

  33. Daniel Freeman
    March 7th, 2015 @ 11:31 pm

    Thanks! You did all the hard lifting, so I’ll just add the local knowledge.

    Portland isn’t really expanding — quite the opposite. East Portland (which the Feds pressured them to annex to provide sewers) has always been neglected, has crappy roads and is looking to break off.

    It’s more a matter of fending off the empire-building of neighboring cities, all hoping to be the next Beaverton (which only Aloha and Nike were able to fend off, through the limits of island annexation). With the urban-growth boundary — a device by which Metro is able to limit building in rural areas — the whole point is that the population density inside the boundary will grow over time, instead of overrunning some of the best farmland in the world.

    However, from the cities’ perspective, those people will be a source of prosperity (for the city) and power (for its officials). So, they get greedy, and towns that are accustomed to governing their own fates look to incorporation to retain their self-determination. But it doesn’t always work out.

  34. K-Bob
    March 8th, 2015 @ 7:42 am

    Ouch! I’m guessing Buzz forgot to use a palm strike whilst applying percussive maintenance in that calibration assignment.

    I agree with your take, Smitty. Discovery is a bee-eye-itch.

  35. K-Bob
    March 8th, 2015 @ 7:43 am

    You have to click on the end of the sentence and pull it to the right to reveal the sekrit word.

  36. K-Bob
    March 8th, 2015 @ 7:47 am

    It used to be all one country until they started that nonsense. Then the rich people paid coolee laborers to dig this really big ditch…


  37. K-Bob
    March 8th, 2015 @ 7:54 am

    That’s what’s behind the mathematically-idiotic claim that “Whites will be a minority by 2040”. They’ve recently sexed-up that idiocy a bit with the even more stupid claim that “white children born in 2020 will be a minority,” (which implies, per the first stupid claim that they will eventually become a minority).

    The actual projections are that the non-hispanic white skin color group will become a plurality sometime before 2050, according to demographic projections. That plurality will exist well into the next century, and continue to be substantially larger than the next group.

    If you add white-skinned hispanics back into the overall white skin grouping, then it remains a majority well beyond 2050.

    Also, the fastest-growing skin color grouping is “mixed race”. So the real takeaway is that:
    1) Race is disappearing thanks to modern transportation, and
    2) Only Democrats care about skin color.

  38. K-Bob
    March 8th, 2015 @ 8:00 am

    Then there’s the Florida State police, which is a a lot more intense than many other state police forces. Those guys are kind of like the marines of cop-world.

  39. McGehee
    March 8th, 2015 @ 11:34 am

    I’ve lived in two states that have sheriffs, and because of the sheriff’s judicial responsibilities they have to retain jurisdiction throughout the county they serve. By the way many Virginia counties are seated in cities nominally independent of said county’s jurisdiction…

    Anyway, if Ferguson’s PD were disbanded the first resort would be for Ferguson to enter into a policing agreement with St. Louis County using sheriff’s deputies. Failing that the city’s police jurisdiction would simply be abolished and it would be catch-as-catch-can from the sheriff, with no full-time presence guaranteed. Several incorporated towns in my county here in Georgia have no police jurisdiction of their own.

  40. Adobe_Walls
    March 8th, 2015 @ 11:49 am

    Such as Buford where I live.