Reason Writers on Russia Today: Tim Cavanaugh Talks Student Loan Raid, SWAT Marine Killing, War on Cameras


The animated Mr. Wright.

Now that we've all learned better than to diddle with the Department of Education, should you expect to get raided by SWAT teams from the Railroad Retirement Board, HUD, or the Bureau of Indian Affairs? 

How many times must the police shoot up the homes of law-abiding veterans before the bad guys learn to stop hiding their four-year-old children from trigger-happy cops? 

Could revulsion at militarization of police rekindle the brief post-Kelo alignment between liberals and libertarians (and will it be just as ineffective as it was then?) 

Reason Senior Editor Tim Cavanaugh discussed the militarization of police, the popularity of violent raids for any and every occasion, and related matters with Thom Hartmann on RT's The Big Picture yesterday. Here is the online version of the segment: 

NEXT: If You Like Your Health Care Plan, Too Bad

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Twenty five years ago agents of these departments started becoming cops. Twenty five years ago no one cared. The DoE SWAT raid was just a story waiting to happen. The only surprise for many of us is how long it took to happen.

    Twenty five years of nutpunches and the nuts eventually desensitize to pain.

  2. Geez, I must be a nutcase to continue to insist that more state equals less civilization, less order and less quality of life.

    1. No, you’re just a nutcase for suggesting the solution is competitive violence and coercion.

      1. So, according to you, its better to keep the nation state and its penchant for mass murder.

        Libertarianism is about competition, always. You are a slaver who apparently worships the nation state. That spells:


        1. If you support a monopoly on violence and a monopoly on protection and a monopoly on the administration of justice you are nothing more than one of Caesar’s good little dubies.

          Like Cynical. Cowardly, craven, cock sucker of the state.

        2. This may sound radical or naive, but I believe the cure for what ails us as a society is less violence, not more efficient violence.

          How to get there and stay there is, of course, a tricky thing, but that doesn’t make it impossible.

          Still, no state has a global monopoly on violence, so we’ve gotten to see the results of their competition on display, particularly last century. It wasn’t pretty. To the extent we don’t have mass slaughter all the time, it seems to have corresponded to the competing hegemonies of the Cold War, and even moreso to the subsequent Pax Americana. For all its evils, the death toll is still low by historical standards.

          If you could explain how what you want is any different from a non-genetic version of tribal warfare, maybe I’ll reconsider whether you’re delusional.

          1. There’d be one hell of a lot less government violence against citizens if the government goons were properly afraid of citizens shooting back.

  3. I seem to remember the liberal / libertarian alignment taking place PRE-Kelo when the left expected Scalia and Thomas to vote in favor. After the decision was released and all the justices seemed to go the opposite as originally expected, I seem to remember a lot of lefties agreeing with it.

    I remember good ol’ joe arguing in favor of it on these very boards.

  4. Where’s Alyona? I ain’t watching this.

  5. By the way, the Stimulus-funds-for-weapons thing is a hard story to pin down, but I’m not just making it up.

    1. Yeah I believe ya.

      I just think the RT lefty host didn’t want you to pin this solely on Obama…which is fair enough.

      1. Right. If I had known Thom was going to cite Andy Griffith on constitutional law, I would have been even friendlier.

        1. That Andy Griffith clip is like watching a nuclear bomb go off when used in the context of modern law enforcement.

  6. Scalia had a nice dissent today in Sykes, complaining about vague statutes and overcriminalization and saying that the whole extra bonus clause should be thrown out for vagueness, since intelligent people couldn’t figure out if they were committing a crime, and SCOTUS had failed to clarify it in four tries.

    Unfortunately, it was a dissent, as Justice Sotomayor showed for the second time (first was Bryant v. Michigan, Confrontation Clause) that she’s way more prosecutor-friendly than Souter was, which was our big fear.

    Lots of anti-prosecutor / pro-defendant cases had a Scalia-Thomas-Souter-Stevens-Ginsburg 5 member majority. Ring, Blakely, US v. Booker, Melendez-Diaz, and Arizona v. Gant, others.

    1. And Crawford v. washington?

      1. Same line of cases, yeah, though I think that one was 7-2.

    2. The solution to this is not judicial it is political.

  7. The DoE raid has now turned out not to be about defaulted loans but about student loan fraud. It’s a non story.

    1. True, armed men kicking people’s doors in and assaulting innocent residents to investigate minor white collar crimes is a non-story.

    2. Agreed. Flashbangs all around for the next young female drug addict who likes to forge checks.

  8. Whiskey-Tango-Foxtrot
    Fuck me.
    I am STILL trippin on the fact that the Department of Education conducted a raid.

  9. I hear UNICEF has a full slate of tier 1 operators that will fuck you up if you ask for money in those little boxes and then keep it for yourself.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.