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Archive for the ‘prison state USA’ Category

So, Julian Assange has been arrested and turned over to the U.S. government on a now-unsealed indictment. Julian Assange is a legend in his own mind who is fundamentally an agent of the Russian government. His participation in the election of the Giant Orange Rage Toddler is just one of the things he did that I detest. His participation on the Russian operation against Hillary Clinton is now incontrovertible. He is a tool.

The thing is, it’s not illegal to be an agent of the Russian government. I’ve read the indictment now, and it’s all nonsense. It accuses him of encouraging Chelsea Manning to hack U.S. government computers, and it claims Assange received an encrypted password hash from Manning (but not that he sent a decrypted password back). Thing is, encouraging someone to give you information is a fundamental part of investigative journalism, if that’s illegal, then investigative journalism as a whole is illegal. Furthermore, Assange is not a U.S. citizen and was not doing this under U.S. jurisdiction. So reading the indictment I was utterly baffled, until suddenly it clicked. This isn’t about Assange. This is about the Mueller Report and criminalizing publication of the entire uncensored report if it ever does leak out.

The one thing Assange is *not* accused of doing is receiving and publishing classified information. That’s because it’s not illegal to receive and publish classified information. It’s only illegal for government employees and contractors to transmit classified information to unauthorized parties. And there is one big reason why Assange could not be indicted for receiving and publishing classified information: New York Times v. United States, 1971. Otherwise known as the “Pentagon Papers” case before the U.S. Supreme Court, where the NYT and Washington Post published the classified Pentagon Papers and the precedent was set — you can’t be prosecuted for publishing classified information. Most recently tested when Judith Miller outed a CIA employee with the result that an entire anti-nuclear-proliferation network was rounded up and executed by various nasty state actors. So if you can’t prosecute a newspaper for publishing classified information, maybe you can make an end-around by prosecuting them for encouraging someone to send them the classified information? If so, then the fact that the New York Times has set up an encrypted network to receive classified information from whistleblowers and encourages whistleblowers to use that network is enough to convict their publisher if they do publish classified information.

In other words, it’s not about Assange. It’s about the New York Times and Washington Post. If Assange can be successfully prosecuted for encouraging people to leak classified information, so can the NYT and Washington Post — and for a certain Giant Orange Rage Toddler, that’s a great reason to do it.

– Badtux the Press Penguin

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Julia Isabel Amparo Medina was 9 years old, presented a valid U.S. passport card to cross the border to go to school, and was detained by the Child Border Perverts because she gave “inconsistent information” when interrogated. She was detained for 36 hours as she was interrogated by multiple strangers who threatened her and lied to her. She had to be rescued by the Mexican embassy after CBP refused to release her to her mother. That’s right, an American had to be rescued from the Child Border Perverts by the Mexicans.

WTF? Apparently none of these Border Patrol agents ever had a sister or a 9 year old daughter of their own. Expecting a 9 year old to give consistent answers when being subjected to deliberately manipulative questioning and false statements from investigators is idiotic and indefensible. A 9 year old girl simply isn’t developmentally capable of handling that situation, period, and shouldn’t be saying *anything* to law enforcement — only their parent should be talking to law enforcement. This is disgusting, racist, and perverted. Great job, child abusers at the CBP, I bet you were stroking yourself in the bathroom afterwards too at that hot 9 year old action.

But hey, she’s *brown*, so that makes it okay. Right? Right?! GRR.

— Badtux the Disgusted Penguin

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Look at all these black welfare queens that they busted….

Oh wait, those aren’t black people, they’re white people! Which, undoubtedly, is why New Jersey launched a pilot amnesty program for those who committed welfare fraud.

So, uhm, if they had been black… do you think that New Jersey would have launched an amnesty program? Oh fuck no. Black people don’t get amnesty here in the United States. They get sentences for 10% longer times than white people who’ve committed the same crime. That’s how it works in “post-racial” America — white people get the amnesty, black people get the prison time.

– Badtux the Calling-it-like-it-is Penguin

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They tied him to a restraint chair, then, as he was immobilzed, repeatedly tased him while shouting “stop resisting!” and laughing — including tasing him on his balls.

Jordan Norris wasn’t exactly a Boy Scout that day. He’d threatened to kill deputies earlier in the day, and was yelling and screaming and banging his head against the bars in his cell before they pulled him out and started torturing him.

But a cop’s job is not to punish people for crimes. A cop’s job is to arrest people and hold them for a court. It’s the court’s job, not a cop’s job, to assign punishment.

In this particular case it appeared that Norris had a psychotic episode. He spent 10 days in a psychiatric institution after the cops finally tired of tasing him and hauled him off to the looney bin. I can’t help but think that torturing him with stun guns — yeah, shocking people with an electroshock weapon is torture (I can’t believe I have to link to Amnesty International to make that clear!) — couldn’t have helped.

But hey, just another day in Police State USA. The cops involved will get a free vacation then their jobs back, while the dude who was tortured… well, maybe his lawyers will get some money. But it won’t be money taken from the cops. So why should they change their ways?

– Badtux the Bad Sovok Penguin
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A spoon, you say? A spoon with spaghetti sauce residue on it? What’s that got to do with the drug war, you say?

Ask Ashley Gabrielle Huff about that.

After a spoon was found on her during a traffic stop, a spoon she insisted was last used to eat Spaghetti-O’s at the office for lunch, Ashley Gabrielle Huff was kept in jail awaiting trial on bogus meth charges due to astonishingly high bail despite the fact that she had no criminal record, was married, had children in the schools, and otherwise was no flight risk. She was ready to plead guilty and forever give up her voting rights just to get out of jail if they gave her time served. Then the lab results came back, months after the spoon had been submitted to the state crime lab: Spaghetti sauce.

Just as she’d insisted from the beginning.

Our drug war is ridiculous. A spoon? That was all they had, a spoon, and purported residue on said spoon? Yet that was all it took to deprive her of her rights and put her in a cage for months.

The reason I bring this up is because there is now a widespread movement amongst progressives to reform the bail system to do away with injustices like that. Bail bondsmen in the state of California are outraged about it, but the fact of the matter is that most people in jail are not there because they’ve been sentenced for a crime. They’re there because they can’t afford bail. And while they’re in jail, they’ve lost their job, their children may be in foster care, their home was repossessed or they were evicted with no ability to retrieve their belongings, their college kicked them out for non-attendance and kept their tuition money, and otherwise had their lives destroyed.

It’s one of the few things that the progressive Left and the libertarian Right agree on: the bail system is broken, it enriches bail bondsmen and local sheriffs who run jails at the expense of poor people and taxpayers, and needs to be fixed so that people who aren’t a flight risk have bail set according to their income, not according to some fixed schedule writ in stone.

Which means: entrenched people who benefit from the current system are keeping it from happening.

For now.

— Badtux the Criminal Injustice Penguin

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And this time, he accidentally caught himself on his own bodycam planting the drugs. It turns out that the bodycams are *always* recording. They just don’t keep the recordings longer than 30 minutes or so unless you press the “record” button — at which point it keeps the recording, *plus* thirty seconds prior. Thirty seconds during which he was planting the drugs.

Oops!

Baltimore Police Officer Richard Pinheiro apparently is still an active officer with the Baltimore Police Department. Apparently the only way the Baltimore PD will take you off the street is if you’re caught on camera murdering someone or raping someone. And probably not even then.

And people wonder why Officer Friendly has a bad rep today?!

– Badtux the “Police state, y’all” Penguin

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Because the Minneapolis Police Department killed a *white woman* by the name of Justine Damond, so their usual responses to police shootings are no longer applicable.

Yeah, the usual responses:

  1. The victim was just a thug
  2. The victim had a long and dastardly criminal record including speeding, jaywalking, and breathing!
  3. Hey, look at this photo of the victim that I found on the Internet, I know it’s the victim because it’s almost the same facial features even though the height and size and hairstyle are different, but look at this photo! Making gang signs! Posing with a gun! Got gang tats! Total bad hombre, people!

But all of that goes out the window when the person shot is a photogenic blonde white woman dressed in pajamas. That last tactic in particular — posting a photo of some gang-banger who is not the victim, but looks similar to the victim, then claiming that this proves the victim was a gang-banger and thus deserved to be shot — isn’t going to fly at all in this case. And the usual “he was a scary brown person so I was in fear for my life!” doesn’t really apply either. Oooh, scared by a blond girl in pajamas and bunny slippers? What are you, like, five years old?!

So let’s see what happens here. Still, I’m suspecting that the officer who fired the shot may end up jobless, but he’s never going to see the insides of a prison cell. Because in police states, police can kill with impunity. In fact, my suggestion to any budding mass murderers out there is to become a police officer. You can kill all the people you want to kill, and nothing will happen to you except the occasional paid vacation. Joy!

– Badtux the Police State Penguin

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