Police Abuse

Robocop, Circa 1924: "The Radio Automata Have No Equal"


"Such a machine would seem to be exceedingly valuable to disperse mobs, or for war puroposes and even for industrial purposes…. For fighting mobs use is made of tear gas which is stored in a  tank under pressure and which alone will quickly disperse a mob if necessary. The arms are provided with rotating discs which carry lead balls on flexible leads. These act as police clubs in action…Bullets do not affect them and if equipped with a twenty to forty H.P. engine, they will be well nigh irresistible."—Science and Invention, May 1924

As for turning their backs on elected leaders at funerals for slain officers? Well, that depends on who's operating the "automata," doesn't it?

Via the Twitter feed of Hell Is Empty.

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  1. The wheel with the balls hanging from it needs no description. Why does it need eye lights, by the way?

    1. To intimidate the mob and give children nightmares, obviously.

    2. I think the “tear gas dispenser” didn’t need a tag either. We all know what that is.

      1. What if this was designed by Warty in a past life?

      2. It pees on the mob. It pees tear gas on the mob. I can’t stop giggling.

        I can’t wait to show this to my son tonight.

        1. Please notice, as well, that it farts engine exhaust.

          1. Byte my shiny metal ass!

        2. I love how people say we live in a libertarian dystopia *now*, when in the past, a forward-thinking Industrialist could order his own Union Busting army of robots straight from Sears Roebuck

      3. The ‘tear gas outlets’ and ‘engine exhaust’ note are very… anthropomorphically quaint.

        It needs an array of antennae on the top that need to be re-aligned every morning.

  2. “Telegraphone”?

    1. Some of the words Hugo coined did not catch on: “scientifiction” was another. Others did: “science fiction” and “television.”

  3. If it weren’t for the police unions, they’d have these in every town.

  4. If we disrespect it, will it turn its back on us?
    I know I won’t turn my back on it.

  5. Note who wrote this little article:

    Hugo Gernsback. One of the ur-fathers of science fiction.

    No point, really. I just found it interesting.

  6. My pet-sitter’s Peruvian ex-boyfriend was unemployed living in her garage for 9 months, now he makes $13 an hour as a Radio Police Automaton operator for the Hong Kong police department. Last month he made $4500 working just a few hours! Now he takes out his frustrations for his failed life on crowds of Chinese protesters! You can do it too! Check it out:


    1. That Peruvian dude, is living the life!


      1. Depends.

        How hot is your pet-sitter?

    2. 9/10. The one issue is that you don’t have an outrageous amount of money and what would be an outrageous number of hours. I’d have gone with $20,000 at $62 an hour.

  7. How quaint. A (presumably) nonlethal flail, instead of a 20mm chain gun and a flamethrower.

    1. Just getting a handle on the scale of that thing, unless the flail is b a r e l y turning, its going to be crushing skulls like eggshells.

    2. Those both require ammunition. The flail can continue dispensing justice for hours at a time with only occasional breaks to hose the blood off.

      1. It drinks the blood to fuel itself.

      2. Those both require ammunition.

        Not to mention heat up, melt themselves down, and destroy property.

        A circle of these robots can face each other, march forward, and turn a small area of protesters into sausage.

        And, thanks to the treaded footwear, none will fall down.

  8. The 21st century has already seen drone pilots in Colorado who drop bombs in the middle east. How long before the local constabulary has officers in Saskatchewan tear-gassing American protesters?

    1. “Hello, welcome to Riot Control Inc., this is Sanjay – I mean Bob, how may I help you?”

      “This is the Oklahoma State Police. We need to unleash our riot robots against a mob in Tulsa. We understand you operate the controls.”

      “Yes, I see, but first let me ask a few verification questions…[several minutes later]…OK, now let me transfer the call…”


      “”Hello, welcome to Riot Control Inc., this is Rajiv – I mean Ernest, how may I help you?”

      “Never mind, the rioters have gone home now.”

  9. unless the flail is b a r e l y turning, its going to be crushing skulls like eggshells.

    Quite possible, but it also depends on the mass and hardness of the ball.

    I was merely projecting my naive belief that RESISTANCE IS FATAL* had not yet infected the culture.

    *not that fatalities were unknown in large scale police riots.

    1. The arms are provided with rotating discs which carry lead balls on flexible leads

      Well, they’re lead, and according to the concept drawings, larger than a fist. Yeah, I’m going to go with “crushing skulls like eggshells” as my assessment as well.

  10. I see that we’ve still go an issue with the feet problem.
    E.D. 209 had a problem with stairs and this thing has walking legs on tracked feet. That’s not going to work on stairs.

    1. I think they are merely fixed at offset positions to provide stability. There are no labels indicating hinges or flexibility.

      1. There’s motorized ball joints at the knees.

        But, without some way to lift the legs (which maybe they get from the knees), this thing can’t handle any terrain that isn’t pretty unobstructed.

        1. With captions yet! But I would have had to notice them to refrain from a stupid comment.

  11. I can only imagine how hilarious it would have been to see rioters just tip over every single one of these 1924 produced anti-riot robots.

    1. Yeah, they’d be dead easy to flank, and that radio antenna is coming right off with the first lasso.

  12. my buddy’s mother makes $72 /hr on the internet . She has been without work for 5 months but last month her payment was $12076 just working on the internet for a few hours. read more…………
    ????? http://www.netjob70.com

  13. “Dead or alive, you’re coming with me.”

  14. I just hope that Bok and Payne are taking note. Cause, in terms of labelin, the diagram of RoboConstable? there is WAY better than what we get on Fridays.

  15. my friend’s sister makes $68 an hour on the laptop . She has been without work for 10 months but last month her check was $21549 just working on the laptop for a few hours. browse this site……….
    ????? http://www.netjob70.com

  16. But they’re GREEN with a gas-electric hybrid drive system so they must be AOK and safe etc.

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