Skip to main content

Soldier Policeman


The events in Ferguson Missouri have me thinking about former Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge and his infamous “Midnight Crew.” While much has been made about the militarization of the police regarding body armor and Humvees, not so much has been said about what certainly can be seen as a shared mentality, even identity, between the soldier and the police officer. Burge brought the Phoenix Program from Vietnam to Chicago and tortured people (black men of course) freely for decades. Certainly this was a militarization of the police.

A couple years ago the Obama Administration made a conscious effort to get war veterans into police uniforms. For the first time since its creation the Justice Department’s grant program “Community Oriented Policing Services,” or COPS, (one wonders how long it took them to come up with words that fit the acronym) required cities to hire only veterans with the federal money. Just like Black Hawk helicopters, we have a bunch of them and have no clue what to do with them. With the Department of Veterans Affairs in shambles, it is easier to give them the same weapons with a new uniform, and a new enemy.

In a paper done by the Naval Center for Combat and Operational Stress Control specifically dealing with the question of war veterans going into law enforcement after PTSD diagnoses, it was concluded “PTSD is not generally an automatic disqualification for employment with law enforcement agencies.” Furthermore, “several agencies, including the Seattle Police Department and California Department of Forestry, stated that they had hired individuals with histories of PTSD, although most agencies alluded that they had as well.”

People fighting in unnecessary wars overseas come back to find the only marketable skills they have are put to use fighting unnecessary wars at home. Our industrial complexes, both prison and military, aren’t so far apart.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Someone get the CDC a thesaurus!

https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/cdc-gets-list-of-forbidden-words-fetus-transgender-diversity/2017/12/15/f503837a-e1cf-11e7-89e8-edec16379010_story.html?utm_term=.9280df07ab70 I feel like this may be one of those stories that is quietly walked back in a week or so. Government bureaucracies are nothing if not committed to absolutely staying the same, and they can get around a word ban with little change in intent. Trump is hilariously committed to breaking brains of the liberal pundit class and his half-wit base loves it. It’s really all he has, as he hasn’t been able to get much else done. (Please don’t remind me of the tax bill that is all but certain to become law.)

The Piss Test

I find some perverse solace in knowing someone has to handle my piss, right there in front of me, in order to tell if I've been a good clean boy, or whether I've been dirty and bad. I hope there's at least a brief moment of " good god, what the fuck am I doing" (now she's tipping the capped piss container on its side in order to write something I assume is highly technical medical jargon on it.) Is it warm enough? Like baby formula, you have to warm up fake piss in the microwave before you can pass it off as your own. (The microwave wattage is important. I don't think altitude matters though.) I don't even know of any gods who care about piss temperature.  I know it's not her fault. It's a job. But holding piss, even if you label it a "specimen," is still a depressing way to sustenance. It's only slightly better than being a bill collector, a stock broker, or the President. We do share a bond. An unspoken understan
I’m listening to Christopher Hitchens’ fine collection of essays, “arguably.” I’d read many of these years ago, but had forgotten how good of a writer he was. Listening to him take down JFK is pure poetry. However his post 9/11 theme, that fundamentalist Islam is the threat most comparable to 20th century fascism for the enlightenment influenced democracies, stands on even shakier ground today. His realpolitik version of Trotsky’s “permanent revolution” had our enlightenment influenced democracy with Puritan characteristics as some sort of revolutionary regime spreading the best we can do to some despotic areas. It’s quite a twist that Iraq ended up being a boon to Iran, which caused the gulf monarchies to freak out. Of course Trump and his goons are now trying to make amends by demonizing Iran to an absurd degree. I wonder if America allying itself with al-Qaeda in Syria would be enough to cause Hitchens to rethink some things? Maybe his weird hatred for the Baathists extended to the