Iowa

Army Veteran Hangs U.S. Flag Upside Down to Protest Eminent Domain, Gets Arrested

A law banning "flag desecration" that's already been declared unconstitutional remains on the books in Iowa.

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Sort of a crime, kinda but not really.
publicdomainpictures.net

Homer Martz, a 63-year-old U.S. Army veteran from Iowa, was unhappy about the oil pipeline being built on his property by a private company which had been granted access to the land through eminent domain. Among Martz's concerns were the risk the pipeline presents to his water supply and the fact that the pipeline could have been placed — much less disruptively, a few hundred feet away from its current path — where it wouldn't disturb anyone's home or water supply.

So he decided to protest this public-private intrusion into his home by hanging a U.S. flag upside down.

Then the police arrived.

Martz told The Messenger that two members of the sheriff's department showed up at his door last week holding his flags and informed him that he was in violation of an Iowa state statute banning "flag desecration," a misdemeanor punishable by up to 30 days in jail. Defiantly, Martz walked past the officers and hung the flag upside down once more. He was promptly arrested.

Chapter 718A of Iowa state code makes it a crime to "publicly mutilate, deface, defile or defy, trample upon, cast contempt upon, satirize, deride or burlesque, either by words or act, such flag, standard, color, ensign, shield, or other insignia of the United States, or flag, ensign, great seal, or other insignia of this state…"

Though the statute was ruled unconstitutional by a federal judge in 2014, and though Iowa prosecutors had been admonished not to enforce it, this "dead law" remains on the books.

Martz also reportedly put up a sign on his flagpole reading "In China there is no freedom, no protesting, no due process. In Iowa? In America?" Martz told The Messenger that the police took down his sign, and added:

"I'm a soldier," he said. "When I walked to the airport in the '70s with my dress uniform on, I was spit on. I stood in front of people that were protesting, and I've been cussed at. And like I said, that's their rights. I've never infringed on their rights.

"But you know, freedom of speech, freedom to protest—people can burn the American flag," Martz said. "It's legal. That's the Supreme Court."

On Monday, Calhoun County Attorney Tina Meth Farrington moved to dismiss the charges against Martz, adding, "The Legislature should take immediate action to repeal this law so that other citizens and law enforcement are not caught in this type of situation again," according to the Associated Press. A judge promptly complied with Farrington's request, dismissing the charges.

Below you can watch a Reason TV interview with Philip K. Howard, the author of The Rule of Nobody: Saving America from Dead Laws and Broken Government:

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  1. Calhoun County Attorney Tina Meth Farrington.

    Great band name.

    1. would snort

      1. would Freebase

        light bulb or foil? hrmmm

        1. Nevaeh . I can see what your saying… Ruby `s stori is great… on tuesday I got a top of the range Infiniti after having earned $9212 thiss month and in excess of 10k this past month . no-doubt about it, this really is the most-comfortable job Ive ever done . I actually started nine months/ago and pretty much straight away was making minimum $77 per-hour . view …………. http://freedoms.top/

    2. In the land of the free, taxpayers pay for constables to trespass on private property to enforce cloth laws.

  2. “The Legislature should take immediate action to repeal this law so that other citizens and law enforcement are not caught in this type of situation again”

    Oh, pull the other one, the legislature could repeal it and the cops would just “forget” about the repeal.

    1. “Is that right? Well we ain’t got a radio.”

      1. “My sins been warshed away!”

  3. Yeah, law enforcement got “caught up” in the confusion.

  4. the fact that the pipeline could have been placed ? much less disruptively, a few hundred feet away from its current path ? where it wouldn’t disturb anyone’s home or water supply.

    I’m not really believing that moving a pipeline a few hundred feet would keep his water supply uncontaminated if it broke

    1. Why would you expect it to break? Does the man live on an active fault zone?

      1. I don’t know, and I didn’t say I expected it to. Stop projecting and actually respond to what other people wrote.

        1. You made a dumbass comment and I called you out on it. The landowner appears concerned about the pipeline breaking ground near his well, not contamination from product loss.

      2. I suspect a hundred feet away would’ve put the line on his neighbour’s property…. However I respect… no demand… his right to protest.

  5. Even if the law hadn’t been nullified by a court, hanging a flag upside down (an internationally recognized distress signal, BTW) doesn’t meet the statutory definition.

    It is unusual for laws that have been declared unconstitutional by the courts to be taken off the statute books, at least in any kind of timely fashion. So, I’m not surprised this is still on the books in Iowa. I don’t blame the legislature here for not passing another bill striking it from the books.

    I blame the idiot sheriff, his moron deputies, and their cretinous DA for arresting the man under a statute that (a) was unconstitutional and (b) wasn’t violated regardless.

    1. And the post script is the sheriff and his deputies were arrested and charged with false arrest, deadly threats with a firearm, abuse of authority and the prosecutor was also arrested on similar charges? Right? Because those laws are on the books too.

      1. To be fair:
        Calhoun County Attorney Tina Meth Farrington moved to dismiss the charges against Martz,

        She would be the “prosecutor,” and at county level “the DA,” so it sounds like she dumped the case as soon as it got to her, and so didn’t violate Martz’s rights.

      2. He should be able to sue for false arrest. The cops are not eligible for qualified immunity since they based the arrest on a law that was widely known to have been struck down.

        1. In a sane world he would have actively resisted the cops for physically assaulting him on his private property. And his neighbors would have come to help him.

    2. Martz told The Messenger that the police took down his sign,

      Man, the damages just keep piling up, if he decides to take them to court.

      Hell, if we had private prosecution of crimes here, there’s a fistful of criminal violations – trespassing, assault, false arrest, false imprisonment, theft, just for starters.

    3. (an internationally recognized distress signal, BTW)

      That’s where he fucked up. His distress attracted vultures.

    4. Upside down flags are not an ‘officially’ recognized symbol of distress internationally.

      Unofficially – it’ll probably get someone to take a closer look, *if* they notice it*.

      The problem is that for a lot of countries you can’t really tell if their flag is upside down or not and since its not consistent its not listed as one.

      Inside the US, the Flag Code specifies that the American flag can be flown upside down – but only to signal ‘dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property’. The Flag Code is actual *federal law*, but since it prescribes no penalty for violations . . . the worst that could happen is you get arrested, go to trial, sit there with a stupid grin on your face while the jury deliberates, and – if found guilty – go free with no fine or jail time at the end.

      1. Arguably you could get sued if someone incurs damages trying to come to your aid.

      2. distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property

        Like when gun wielding “it’s all OK if we get home safe” government agents trespass on your property and confront you? Or do you mean when the government stole his property to help their cronies?

        Ahem, “Not guilty.”

  6. Just FYI, hanging the flag upside down isn’t desecration, it’s a universal sign of distress.

    1. Or, what quicker people than I already said.

      1. And to both of you, he *was* distressed.

    2. This man was obviously unable to deal with the rigors of freedom and so was calling out to law enforcement to relieve him of it.

    3. (Gives Paul his Merit Badge, and then gives him 2-fingered salute)

      1. That’s one finger more than you usually salute with…

        1. I don’t do “the bird”. I am more old-school, and prefer the first two gestures indicated here.

          1. I had no idea that Waldo was Italian. That’s why people can’t seem to find him.

          1. No, I got the reference. *Gives Gilmore a salute.
            I keed, I keed, no seriously, you’re great.

  7. Below you can watch a Reason TV interview with Philip K. Howard, the author of The Rule of Nobody: Saving America from Dead Laws and Broken Government:

    It’d be nice if someone would save us from the live ones, too.

  8. On Monday, Calhoun County Attorney Tina Meth Farrington moved to dismiss the charges against Martz, adding, “The Legislature should take immediate action to repeal this law so that other citizens and law enforcement are not caught in this type of situation again,”

    So, they should act with great speed, one might say?

    1. Got news for ya, sweetie:

      You are responsible, as an attorney, for knowing if that law has been overturned or not. Whether the legislature actually strikes it or not is immaterial.

      Its been a few years, but not that many, that I noticed there are still anti-abortion laws on the books in at least two states. There’s a reason why legislature don’t repeal those laws – if the decision ruling them unconstitutional is overturned, then the laws are still on the books and go back into effect. If you repeal them, you have to pass new bills to put them back on the books.

      1. There’s a reason why legislature don’t repeal those laws

        And also because your opponent in the next election, as well as various local “patriot” groups, will be all over, “The Honorable [incumbent’s name here] voted for des’cratin The Flag! O.M.G.”

        You are responsible, as an attorney, for knowing if that law has been overturned or not.

        And the County Attorney was responsible, since she got the charge dropped as soon as she could get to court.

        1. Yeah,, on reflection, I can’t be too hard on her.

  9. 1988 called. It wants its issue back.

  10. OT

    “What I’m finding with those who have a problem with [Darrell] Castle is that they fall into one of two categories:

    “1. He’s not Gary Johnson.

    “2. He’s not Ted Cruz.

    “With the Johnson supporters, I get it. You want a third party and you feel more inclined to lean towards the Libertarians.

    “The Cruz folks puzzle me, however….”

    1. So nothing about the ironic dichotomy of the morality of a small, limited government and the willingness to use draconian governmental measures to uphold Christian moral behavior? You’re sure it’s just the names of the candidates that decides all of this?

      1. Ah, so Gary Johnson proposes draconian governmental measures, but that’s OK because it wouldn’t uphold *Christian* behavior?

        I mean, sure, the Constitution Party platform would allow the states to ban offensive sexual behavior, and it calls for vigorous prosecution of porn, but surely those minor issues pale next to the budget cutting?

        1. When there’s gay Nazi cakes out there not be made — prioritize man!!!!!!

        2. Actually they’re not.

          Well, they might be for you – if you’re not using porn or partaking in anything sexual behavior someone else might find ‘offensive’ then you would tend to underplay the importance of *having the freedom to do those things*.

          The government that can legislate what you can read/watch or do to a consenting person is a government that *will not stop legislating on those issues*.

          Sure, its porn now, not that important – except the reduction in the rate of violent sexual crimes parallels the rise of the easy availability of pornography (though it also seems to parallel the rise of SJWism so there’s that) – but how long before it moves on to erotica? Then ‘overly sexualised’ advertisements? Then ‘inappropriate words’ in ‘children’s literature’? Then anything that casts aspersions on the state or its agents? Then anything deemed insufficiently patriotic?

          How long after homosexuality is re-criminalized before sodomy is also? Then how long before birth control requires a prescription? Before its simply a crime to possess?

          The least of us are actually pretty God damned rich (on a global scale), the expanding budget is not a major problem itself – only the loss of freedoms that come with the government inserting itself into more and more aspects of our lives.

          1. I think you can see, then, why Johnson’s “minor violations of the Purity Test” are actually more significant than some of his supporters may suppose.

            He’s already going after the First Amendment, his handpicked running mate is going after the Second *and* proposing a big-government jobs program which is hard to square with promises of balanced budgets…these things are bad enough in themselves, and they also show a vision of government which has few principled limits.

            1. “”This will be a big year for obscenity prosecutions,” said William F. Weld, the head of the [Reagan Justice] department’s criminal division. ”It will involve cases across the country.””

              1. Of course, Weld has evolved since then.

                1. Here is a story about some people who were convicted in 1987, under Weld’s tenure in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division:

                  “A federal appeals panel, giving government prosecutors a major boost in their battle against pornography, has upheld the 1987 racketeering conviction of a Northern Virginia couple who distributed $105.30 worth of obscene videos and magazines.

                  “Appeals Monday rejected the argument presented by defense attorneys for Dennis E. and Barbara A. Pryba that hundreds of legitimate video and magazine titles were unfairly forfeited after their conviction, effectively driving the Prybas out of business….

                  “The Prybas’ prosecution in late 1987 in U.S. District Court in Alexandria was the federal government’s first use of racketeering laws to prosecute an obscenity case. The Prybas were found guilty of racketeering, conspiracy and trafficking in obscene materials….

                  “U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III sentenced Dennis Pryba to three years in prison and fined him $75,000. Barbara Pryba was given three years’ probation and fined $200,000. Educational Books Inc., the Prybas’ primary business, was fined an additional $100,000….”

            2. And yet his violations are still pretty small compared to Trump/Clinton *and* the guy you keep wanting us to take a look at.

              1. I’m just curious how Castle is *worse* than Johnson/Weld.

                1. (also, if you start from left-libertarian premises, you may well conclude Johnson is best – I’m suggesting that for those who *don’t* start from left-libertarian premises Johnson may *not* be best)

              2. Trump is a private citizen. Weld has jailed thousands of Americans for victimless crimes.
                How the fuck did some subset of “libertarians” become such big fans of government ?

                1. Weld was once a private citizen. Then he got elected.

                  1. He was completely harmless as a private citizen.

                    1. Tell that to Vera Coking. Tell that to the students at Trump University. Tell that to the people who bought into several Trump branded properties that were definitely not ‘classy’ nor ‘the best’ and were in fact poor quality near scams depending on the Trump name to keep the money rolling in.

          2. Any violation of freedom of speech is automatically important and intolerable, whether it’s porn or not.

            1. What about the CPD? Johnson wants the government to interfere with their plans for a joint Democrat-Republican press conference.

              1. For Gary Johnson there is no problem that doesn’t have a government solution. That’s why he’s so popular ’round these parts.

                1. Whereas DADDY aims on outspending Hillary on stimulus and infrastructure.

    2. He has my vote if he can finally figure out what really happened on 9/11.

      1. The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest ended

      2. The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest ended

      3. The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest ended

      4. The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest ended

        1. Are the squirrels commemorating the destruction of the forest or what?

        2. Are you sure?

          1. It’s still over

  11. Never desecrate our holy flag. Desecrating what it supposedly represents is cool, though.

    1. Desecrating a piece of fabric is viewed as an insult not only to the citizens of this country by the brave men and women that fought/fight and die to protect it. Sending those brave men and women into harms way to goose a politicians poll ratings or to fight in a pointless conflict that will do squat to increase our safety or security – no problem.

  12. I currently have both the Gadsden flag and Stars and Stripes mounted outside my house. Waiting to get harassed or put on a list for it.

    Maybe if I paint a blue stripe on my curb it will fend off any “inquisitive” police. Like lamb’s blood above the door, ya know?

    1. You’re thing your still waiting to be on the list. How cute.

    2. Have you not been paying attention? Everyone is already on the list.

      1. *sniffs* One would assume that I would be on several such lists.

  13. I currently have both the Gadsden flag

    (gasp) this is what Hazel was talking about! Racists!

    Maybe if I paint a blue stripe on my curb

    Jesus, man, why don’t you just start throwing molotov cocktails around?! Curbs are public property! you can’t just go re-zoning them willy-nilly.

    You must be one of these Sovereign Citizens the SPLC warned me of.

  14. Speaking of freedom…

    The one person I feel bad for? John Stossel. He’s the one that has to have that fuck-ugly twat of a harridan associated with him after he’s done so much to try to stem the size of government.

    And, his brother would be so much better off not having that authoritarian shit-heel as a spouse.

    1. Tolerance in action!!!!!

      1. Uh, Mr. Stossel….

        While that story dominated a news cycle, Dr. Stossel told his wife that, to salvage his intellectual reputation, he may have to change his mind. Soon after that, he told her he planned to vote for the Libertarian ticket ? a vote that, in his view, would not matter in left-leaning Massachusetts, but one that his conscience and marriage could withstand.

        If that’s the case, you’re doing “Libertarian” wrong. Given the type of progs in that state, voting L should drive them batshit, if it were actually being done properly.

        1. I think Johnson and Weld (former Mass governor!) have made the LP, if not respectable, at least tolerable in prog-land.

          I don’t actually mean this as a compliment.

          1. Crap, you mean I can’t vote for the Libs either?

            Maybe I’ll just write in Mickey Mouse (again).

    2. harridan

      I swear you’re the only person i’ve ever heard use this term. Did you read it in a book recently?

      re: the article

      Those are some of the most boring people alive.

      This might strike some people as contradictory, but the fact is that many people who piss and moan here about politics constantly? Don’t really care about politics as much as you might think. Its interesting to debate because smart people like to talk about “ideas”… but when it comes down to day-to-day reality? I don’t care who my friends and/or family vote for. Hell, they already run the gamut. The fact that some people can’t separate people’s “opinions” from who they are…. is just sad. pathetic-sad. get over it, you shmooos.

      1. Did you read it in a book recently?

        Hehehehe… No, I picked up somewhere years ago. On TV, of course. Probably something Python-ish. But, it stuck with me.

        I was toying around with throwing “dick-shrinker”, because, DAMN… Stossel’s doctor-brother should be able to get better poon than that.

        And, while I’m sorta-serious about that, why commit to a marriage when you have to put up with that kind of ball-busting over a candidate? I mean, it sounds like Donald is just the symptom, and his actual political outlook is what is driving this, but she can’t say that, and still consider herself “liberal”. Oh, no… better to make it about the candidate, since the other side has someone so easy to loathe.

        1. Yeah, I’m not seeing the down side for him

          1. If she leaves? Yep. But, it looks like they’re staying put for the time being.

            And, this is from someone who like marriage!

            1. She just so looks the part.

        2. “Hehehehe… No, I picked up somewhere years ago. On TV, of course. Probably something Python-ish. But, it stuck with me.”

          Here, maybe?

          1. No. Can’t say I’ve ever heard of it/seen it.

            I think it was Fawlty Towers, maybe. I mean, it sounds like something Basil would say to Sybil. It’s been a while

          2. Nice:)

    3. “Yeah, honey, I saw the light and marked my secret ballot for Hillary Clinton. What’s for dinner?”

    4. “I’m voting the same way you are, my Dear. By secret ballot.”

    5. “That is news to me,” Dr. Maguire said. “And I’ll be calling my attorney.”

      After a pause, she went on: “I don’t think he will vote for him. But if he does, I hope he never tells me about it. For someone who is so reasonable in every other part of his life, and who expects people to have expertise, it doesn’t really link with the Tom Stossel that I know.

      “I would just be disgusted on every level,” she continued. “And also a little fearful. Disgusted on the marriage level, but fearful for our society.”

      Self-centered much? Why should he be less disgusted with the ramifications of your choice? But that never occurred to you, did it…

    6. All about the Stossels, but not the other couple with the one time supposed libertarian until she realized she was just gagging for some nice big statism?

  15. As gets shown every year, when a legislature wants to move fast, they can get a bill from being proposed to a governor’s desk in shockingly short time periods.

    So don’t buy the “it’s so hard to repeal an unconstitutional law” BS, if that law is still there, it’s because somebody, either the state legislature or the governor, want it there. And they fully know that even if charges get dropped, dismissed and so-on, that police will still arrest folks based on it.

    This sort of thing, police arresting somebody for a defunct law and the charges getting dropped, isn’t an accident, it’s the intent.

    1. Yep. The perfect example of “the process is the punishment” theory.

    2. In a lot of cases, it’s also because no representatives want to have their name on a law allowing flag desecration. Or whatever.

  16. Very unbright cops.

    1. Hey! So what’s that group for really intelligent people?

      Mensa.

      What’s the opposite of Mensa?

      The police department.

      Thank you. Thank you. I’m here for about another hour! Be good to the waitstaff!

  17. RE: Army Veteran Hangs U.S. Flag Upside Down to Protest Eminent Domain, Gets Arrested
    A law banning “flag desecration” that’s already been declared unconstitutional remains on the books in Iowa.

    Everyone should be applauding the State of Iowa for not allowing one of its citizens, an Army veteran no less, to peacefully demonstrate his dissatisfaction with the wise and noble concept of eminent domain. Such actions as turning the flag upside down only encourages other members of the lowly plebian class to show their disdain of our proud and wonderful socialist slave state. If left unchecked, these hooligans will engage in other counter-revolutionary activities as carrying signs indicating their displeasure of whatever judicious policy our obvious betters has set forth for them, not voting for one of the two politically parties and reading books counter to the wishes and demands sent forth by our ruling elitist parasites. The State cannot let even one speck of discontent to surface lest others follow suit and destroy our wonderful and benevolent slave state. There can be no further desecration by the doubters and counter-revolutionaries that infect and infest our very neighborhoods.
    That’s what Amerika is all about.

  18. Obviously, citizens cannot expect law enforcement to know about 30-year-old Supreme Court precedent. Obviously.

    1. Yeah, it’s more than that; what halfway educated person wouldn’t immediately suspect that that law couldn’t be enforced, and what kind of police academy wouldn’t at least touch on the concept of free speech (and other civil rights)?

      1. “…what kind of police academy wouldn’t at least touch on the concept of free speech (and other civil rights)?”

        Every one?
        Did I win? What did I win?

        1. The same nut punch the rest of get.

      2. Well, yeah. “Touch on.” As in the class right after lunch in the last week of the course.

  19. Would be a shame if something happened to that pipeline.

  20. Money does indeed talk. So this will be the actual future president?

    http://www.foxnews.com/politic…..uence.html

  21. How about instead of deporting Mexicans we deport people with no sense of humor.

    http://latino.foxnews.com/lati…..billboard/

    1. “”There’s a difference between funny and being offensive,” the group’s executive director, Sam Centellas, said. “They really need to think about how can you just be a little more fun without having to be degrading or demeaning.””

      Maybe if they hire someone as a diversity consultant, to vet our jokes? Can they recommend anyone?

      /ha ha, I’m just kidding, I’m sure they’re not trying to shake people down, that was simply humor.

      1. There have always been humorless fucks but everyone used to ignore them. Now they ruin everything. It’s bullshit.

        1. “According to WCBI, the restaurant chain has pulled several ads in the past, including one that alluded to cult leader Jim Jones and the infamous 1978 mass suicide at Jonestown in Guyana. The ad featured a picture of a margarita with the caption, “We’re like a cult with better Kool-Aid. To die for!””

          Now, *that’s* offensive to the Kool-Aid company, everyone knows it was Flavor-Aid.

  22. Marty is just one victim of many. The most numerous examples of intrusive use of eminent domain come from private oil companies. In the northeast, the south, the Midwest…all over.

    Anthony, you might want to send this to Damon. He is the supposed expert on ED here, and he never really acknowledges the biggest offender. Guess his outrage is selective.

    1. *Martz

    2. Guess his outrage is selective.

      “Aaand, if you look to your left, folks, you’ll see the stunning Lack of Self-Awareness.”

      1. Kind of funny, isn’t it, that the suggested outrage in the article as well as nearly every comment here is about protest, not the issue that Martz was standing up for…unconstitutional seizure of his land by a private company using the government.

        But hey, it’s the oil companies. They’re righteous, right?

        1. Jackand Ace|8.16.16 @ 8:41PM|#
          “Kind of funny, isn’t it, that the suggested outrage in the article as well as nearly every comment here is about protest, not the issue that Martz was standing up for…unconstitutional seizure of his land by a private company using the government.”

          Once more:
          “Aaand, if you look to your left, folks, you’ll see the stunning Lack of Self-Awareness.”
          Plus an absolute ignorance of what the article addressed, and a helping of moving the goal posts! Jack’s a reg’ler logical trian-wreck!

          1. Funny how it’s “unconstitutional”, even though ED is in the 5A.

            Not that it’s being used appropriately here (or, anywhere, these days), but obviously J&A understands.

            1. Yawn.

              The words in the Constitution are “public use,” and they’re not “public good.” And there isn’t a pipeline anywhere that’s open to public use. And Donald Trump felt that taking that old house from that old lady was for public good.

              You might try understanding the difference, and what the entire debate is over ED. Idiot.

              1. Well, fuck face, I understand that:

                A) ED is mentioned in the Constitution.

                B) I never used the words “public good”, so stuff that argument right back up your ass.

                C) Government actors (judges) are the ones that broadened the meaning and understanding of what could be taken.

                D) You are the one that brought up Trump. Actually, plenty of others around here have done so, but you conveniently forget that so that you can climb up on your prog soapbox blame anyone BUT Government.

                E) Your ilk is perfectly happy to assign a “public” aspect to businesses when it comes to accommodation laws, but will completely forget that little issue when it comes to whether or not said public will benefit from a private company getting ED spoils. And, don’t act like there isn’t a connection.

                So, yawn your head off, and try to understand just how shallow and ethically bankrupt you really are, you Government-fellating, ethically-bankrupt shit stain.

                1. Enjoy your evening!

                  1. Jackand Ace|8.16.16 @ 9:34PM|#
                    “Enjoy your evening!”

                    Sit on a running chain saw!
                    Some of us aren’t lying passive-agressives, Jack.

              2. Jackand Ace|8.16.16 @ 9:18PM|#
                “Yawn.
                [verbiage proving Jack can’t read].
                Idiot.”

                Once more:
                “Aaand, if you look to your left, folks, you’ll see the stunning Lack of Self-Awareness.”

            2. Pretty sure he whines about it here as some folks have defended it, and it gives him another chance to feel superior; the bastard has never shown one ounce of principle.
              I know it’s in A5, I don’t like it, but there it is and I’m guessing like mutual defense, it was accepted as the alternative would have made the experiment unworkable from the start.
              I’m of the belief that the founders did presume the Constitution was a starting point, but one to EXPAND freedom, not the opposite. By now, we don’t dare touch it as all the ‘free shit’ advocates (yes, Jack, that’s you) would use it to stick their hands in your and my pockets.

        2. Its kind of funny, isn’t it, that you keep pushing this issue when – to all appearances – its one of the few where libertarians might make common cause with nasty fascists like you.

          1. Let me know when any supposed libertarians here..Writers or commenters…show any outrage over oil companies excessive use of ED. Damon never mentions it. Maybe you have. I’m sure you let me know.

            1. Jackand Ace|8.16.16 @ 9:20PM|#
              “Let me know when any supposed libertarians here..Writers or commenters…show any outrage over oil companies excessive use of ED”

              Jack, I have never accepted the principle of ED under ANY circumstances, while accepting the utilitarian use in certain, limited applications.
              Now, you, you stupid pile of shit, have the opportunity right now to go back and find where I *did* offer any support at all.
              Regarding the Keystone pipeline, I certainly opposed that, as (re: utilitarian), that oil is coming out of the ground and being burnt regardless of any pipeline across the US.
              Watermelons like you latch onto ED, since it gives the hint of principle to a totally unprincipled stance; IOWs, you’re a pathetic liar as you always have been.
              Fuck off.

            2. Am I rally expected to show outrage? To you? Is there some reason I would care enough about what you think to make sure I post something on this topic to signal to *you* where my values are?

              I don’t think so.

              1. So, let *me* know where you’ve shown consistent opposition to ED – not simply consistent opposition to ‘oil companies’. Which is all you’ve been complaining about since you started hammering this topic long ago.

                1. “So, let *me* know where you’ve shown consistent opposition to ED – not simply consistent opposition to ‘oil companies’. Which is all you’ve been complaining about since you started hammering this topic long ago.”

                  Yes, Jack hopes that those of us here will not recognize the fact that he supports every bit of government coercion, *except* this one.
                  Jack, let’s make it clear:
                  You’re a fucking ignoramus too stupid to understand that you insult adults when you presume to slide a piece of bullshit by them, hoping they’re dumb enough to buy your bullshit.
                  Sorry; no one is fooled and many are insulted.

                2. So, let *me* know where you’ve shown consistent opposition to ED – not simply consistent opposition to ‘oil companies’.

                  He doesn’t have any, because he supports ED when used by the government for glorious left-wing purposes. But those evil, greedy, gaia-polluting oil companies are abusing the pure and noble intent of government greatness and have to be stopped. The property owners fucked along the way? They are just useful props here. In any other case, their loss would not only be acceptable but in fact desirable.

            3. It’s bad and evil. Of course, the oil companies don’t actually DO it, the government does, the oil companies (and various other cronies) just kindly ask them to after they’ve donated to their election campaigns.

              Of course, this is all perfect reason to GROW government, because then they won’t have the power to steal property!

              Wait…

    3. Just this week in Florida and the southeast, 135 properties alone. One owner:

      “They have the federal right to seize the property. We had spent months trying to get them to move the pipeline, but we’ve given up the battle on that. I have signed a letter to allow them to enter our property,” said Gerald McGratty, a court-appointed receiver who oversees the property, also known as BK Ranches.

      According to McGratty, “We had a buyer for the property, and they walked away, because of the pipeline.”

      “He said Sabal Trail offered him $600,000 for the property, but he thinks it has caused him millions of dollars in losses. So far, only $448,000 has been paid by Sabal into an escrow account.”

      He will never get a fair return.

      1. Link

        http://www.orlandosentinel.com…..story.html

        Every week another example.

        1. Gee, Jack, I’m amazed a lefty twit like you agrees with quite a few of the folks here. Must be the only time in your life you opposed gov’t power.

      2. In other words, the house that Kelo built. A ruling libertarians–but curiously not most liberals–vehemently opposed.

      3. Also, where is your Lord and Savior Obama intervening on the side of the property owners, like you said he was doing when he told the State Dept. not to approve the Keystone XL connection to Canada?

  23. “I’m a soldier,” he said. “When I walked to the airport in the ’70s with my dress uniform on, I was spit on.

    No one should be arrested for how they fly the starts and stripes–regardless of whether Vietnam veterans being spit on by protestors as they passed through the airport is an urban legend.

    . . . but Vietnam veterans being spit on by protestors as they came in through the airport probably is an urban legend.

    “‘The Spitting Image: Myth, Memory and the Legacy of Vietnam’ is a 1998 book by sociologist Jerry Lembcke. The book argues that the common claim that American soldiers were spat upon and insulted by anti-war protesters upon returning home from the Vietnam War is an urban legend intended to discredit the anti-war movement”.

    http://tinyurl.com/qdl3ury

    To be fair, if everyone claiming to have been at Woodstock had actually been there, there probably would have been some 35 million people at Woodstock.

    1. . . . but Vietnam veterans being spit on by protestors as they came in through the airport probably is an urban legend.

      If I still had it, I could show you the cleaning receipt. SFO, August, 1971. The Army told us to change into civvies to continue on to our destinations.

    2. His point was, back then, he didn’t call for those people to be silences ‘for their disrespect’ and considers it bullshit that when he does something half as insulting, he’s arrested.

      1. Not that he should receive special dispensation for enduring the insults.

    3. Vietnam veterans being spit on by protestors as they came in through the airport probably is an urban legend.

      I think its one thing to write ‘revisionist history’ where you clarify “big facts” which may have been amplified/distorted by subsequent history….

      *(e.g – the desden bombings, which over time became embedded in the public consciousness as the “greatest conflagration of WWII”, which historians now believe was actually about 1/5 the size originally estimated.)

      …but its another thing entirely to try and handwave-away actual anecdotal stories that are actually *true*, (if not universally experienced) which characterized the range of public attitude.

      The problem i see with the latter is that people try and say,

      “Well, see, some people believe it happened every day, but see it didn’t!! Therefore we should now consider these situations super-rare, and because they were super-rare, we probably are also overblowing the degree to which soldiers were denigrated”

      Its a sort of slight-of-hand by which people conduct historical revisionism. because these anecdotes are just that, mostly undocumented stories, they become a convenient tool to pretend that the contempt shown to soldiers didn’t really exist. its sort of a back-door means to white-wash history, and sterilize it of anything inconvenient.

      its the same sort of bullshit people like VDare do with “lynchings”.

      1. e.g. here’s a guy providing some counterpoint

      2. Yeah, my dad was in Nam (Marines), and mentioned this once. You could call my dad a liar, but I wouldn’t recommend it.

        1. Yeah, well MY dad could…
          Anyhow, I’m sure it happened but as a VN vet and living in SF since the late ’60s, I can tell you it happened here about the same as the pro-Palestinian ‘demonstrations’; 20 ‘protesters’, 30 TV coverage people and muy TV close ups to make it look like there were MANY people there.
          BTW, I never got spat upon, wearing my uni for several weeks in the city before mustering out.
          And no, commie-kid, I did not relish the opportunity to off gooks. Or to ‘serve my country’.

      3. I’m not saying it didn’t happen to anybody, but when everybody tells the same story in the same way? Maybe they were all passing the same few people? Maybe, even before the internet, hippie protestors all over the country got together and coordinated their spitting activity? Meanwhile, people’s memories are subconsciously colored by how they felt at the time and stories they were told later.

        It’s kind of like alien abduction stories. They all describe aliens more or less the same way. Big Foot stories work like that, too. Maybe consistency speaks in their favor. but eyewitness accounts usually differ in important details. But people who claim to have been abducted by aliens tend to read a lot about other people who have been abducted by aliens. People who saw Big Foot tend to research a lot about other people who have seen Big Foot. And subconsciously or otherwise, it colors their honest to God memories. Why do they all describe the aliens the same way? Greys with big eyes? Does that mean they’re real?

        I don’t think so.

      4. Being confronted by protestors as you come back from fighting war was something new. It must have been a very emotional time for returning GIs. Sometime circa 1967, you got long haired guys who dress and act like no one did before protesting a war to GIs in their faces. Americans didn’t protest wars like that before. Not in recent memory. Those hippies were indistinguishable from traitors. It must have been really something for soldiers in uniform to walk past protestors like that. And it was new.

        Was anyone ever arrested for spitting on a man in uniform?

        Was any soldier ever arrested for beating the crap out of a protestor for spitting on him?

        1. Those hippies were indistinguishable from traitors.

          I’m not sure how you get to this. There’s a yuge difference between holding servicemen in contempt and openly displaying that contempt and being a traitor. These things are not even in the same state.

          And I say this after having been one of those servicemen for over 2 decades. Hating the military is not, IMO, even *unpatriotic*, let alone traitorous. Doubly so when its over an ‘intervention’.

          1. “There’s a yuge difference between holding servicemen in contempt and openly displaying that contempt and being a traitor.

            I’m talking about the cultural perspective and emotional reaction to someone at the time–not the philosophical argument.

            To patriotic squares everywhere, opposing a war to the troops face was giving aid and comfort to the enemy.

            Didn’t you ever see Hair?

            From the perspective of the square silent majority, hippies confronting servicemen with opposition to the war was inexplicable treason.

            Psychologically, it was like having a military funeral protested by the Westboro Baptist Church–only the Westboro Baptist Church seemed to be everywhere.

      5. I”m not saying anyone is a liar. I’m saying that our memories are highly contextual, and they’re heavily colored by our subsequent understanding of events. For instance, people routinely explain things that happened in childhood in adult terms–they describe what they did as children in terms of how they see the world today. But they couldn’t possibly have understood those things as, say, six year olds.

        So if I came through the airport after leaving Vietnam, feeling apprehensive as hell, and I’m confronted by hippie protestors who I’ve been told think I’m a baby-killer because I did my patriotic duty? The hostility in the air must have been intense. And since back then, I hear the same story–over and over again for 40 years–about how hippies spat on men in uniform. And all I’ve got is an emotional memory of being confronted by protestors in an airport 40 years ago. In that context, I might remember things differently than they actually happened. In fact, it would be odd if my memory didn’t change over time in line with my internal contextual narrative.

      6. It isn’t surprising if people’s memories change to fit a narrative. People have a hard time remembering when they first came to know what they know now. It always seems like we always knew it. Here’s a survey showing that almost 70% of the American people believed that Saddam Hussein was personally complicit in 9/11–the survey was taken in 2003 about six months after we invaded Iraq.

        http://usatoday30.usatoday.com…..iraq_x.htm

        70% of the American people believed that Saddam Hussein was personally complicit in 9//11–but try to find anybody that remembers believing that! I don’t think they’re being dishonest. What they learned since 2006, or so, has simply changed their memory of what they knew and when they knew it.

        Yeah, tell me that GIs were routinely spit on as they walked through the airport, over and over again for 40 years, and amid all the emotional hostility I remember getting walking through the airport, it might be strange if I didn’t remember that happening. It fits the narrative so well. Vietnam War protestors were traitors, you know. The kind that would spit on GIs. Once we know that’s true, and once people confirm that story to each other for 40 years, it’s no wonder if more people remember it than people who really experienced it.

  24. This dude kicks ass

    http://www.greatbigstory.com/s…..ended_pool

    1. Talk about Arch-ery!

  25. Schenectady man under fraud investigation for posing as Catholic priest

    They figured out he wasn’t a priest because the altar boys *weren’t* being molested.

    1. OMG, that’s so offensive, but if you just hire me as a Diversity Outreach Coordinator, I’m sure you won’t have any problems.

      1. It’s offensive because it’s the obvious punchline. H&R readers are more intelligent than that.

          1. So, that’s what it takes?

    2. He gave those poor alter boys a complex

      1. Looks like the squirrels gave you a complex.

        1. They’re all over my ass today

          1. Grabbing at your nuts?

    3. He gave those poor alter boys a complex

    1. OMG, they’re automating everyone’s job, even Dungeon Masters.

    2. BAN FRACTALING NOW!

      1. Jack approves this message!

  26. You just knew Reason would start coming around to the leftist POV on the pipeline issue someday.

    Today is that day. Congratulations.

    1. Sarc? I hope so.

      1. 100% sincere. How bout them apples?

        1. I was trying to be nice.
          Please explain how “Reason would start coming around to the leftist POV on the pipeline issue” and did so.
          I’ll still try to be nice and presume you’re confused.

        2. Still waiting for an explanation of what looks to be a really stupid comment.

        3. “100% sincere. How bout them apples?”
          So we’re to presume 100% stupid? New tulpa sock? New stupido?

    2. … what?

  27. OK, now. Some folks writing for and editing the lefty rag known as the SF Chronicle have been covering ‘climate change’ and petroleum consumption, refining, regulations, etc for years. In fact, the idiots involved have a running comment in the Sunday edition regarding how it’s a ‘bad week’ for moonbeam, because he has not denounced shipping coal through Oakland. Much as the opposition to the Keystone pipeline, that would accomplish zip. But don’t tell the Chron staff.
    Anyhow, after all that coverage, they now express wonder!

    “The mystery behind California’s high gas prices”
    […]
    “The fundamental problem is we’ve got too much market power in too few hands,” said Jamie Court, Consumer Watchdog’s president. “Four refiners control 80 percent of the market. … That creates the ability to artificially reduce supply and artificially inflate prices.”
    http://www.sfchronicle.com/bus…..pid=gatehp (may be pay-walled)

    Actually, the fundamental problem is gov’t regulations dicking with the market such that no one is willing to risk a new refinery, ’cause watermelons like Consumer Watchdog.

    1. Ah, good ol’ San Fran. Proof positive that beautiful scenery and mild weather have fuck-all to do with competence, intelligence, or good sense.

    2. The logical conclusion is that we need more refineries.

      They don’t come to that conclusion, do they?

      1. Yes, they do, and they presume the oil companies are ‘greedy’ and don’t want to build them, since oil companies hate Californians.
        CA watermelons are required to be paranoid. It’s in the ‘terms and conditions’ for CA proggies.

    3. “That creates the ability to artificially reduce supply and artificially inflate prices.”

      Note the phrasing. They’re not actually *accusing anyone*, but see…. the “ability” to do so theoretically exists.

      (and i’m not sure that claim is actually even true, since the wholesale market involves lots and lots of forward-contracting, so the current supply in any given moment is determined by forecast demand; trying to engineer a short term supply shortage strikes me as …. well, implausible. Its not like Enron.)

      and since when is “4” a sign of excess market concentration? I’d love to see the number of industries where the govt goes shopping for bids where fewer than 4 competitors can be found.

      Building new refineries isn’t exactly encouraged by govt either. note =

      the newest refinery with significant downstream unit capacity began operating in 1977 in Garyville, Louisiana. That facility came online in 1977 with an initial atmospheric distillation unit capacity of 200,000 b/cd and as of January 1, 2016 had capacity of 539,000 b/cd.

      The EIA notes that the market has largely expanded over time by enlarging the capacity of existing refiners, and that what new facilities have been added are mostly smaller (20-50,000 b/cd)

      1. In SF we have (surprise!) gov’t officials in positions such that if they can swing one more vote on the BoS and they can cost a developer millions.
        In fact, we recently had a circumstance where one truly ignorant twit changed the rules on the developer for the ‘Transbay Terminal’, thereby allowing the developer to give her the finger and bail, and now putting the taxpayers on the hook for some $240M.
        We also have a (supposedly reformed drunkard), Aaron Peskin, elected as a result of district elections (Hey, 5 more votes and I got a SEAT!) who recently suggested putting ‘rent-control’ regulations on ALL rental units rather than the current pre-’78 limit.
        Had a discussion with (someone who writes) and he asked why I found the suggestion harmful. I suggested he look at it from the perspective of a developer; are you going to risk $XM and X time battling SF regs only to find your new property has been devalued by $YM because Peskin took another supervisor out to a long lunch?
        I think he got it.

        1. I think I can summarize G’s and my points simply: The market discounts the future.

    4. I can’t see the article because it’s paywalled, but if they’re relying on Consumer Watchdog’s “report”, it’s 100% bullshit. I read it a few months ago, and they willfully lie about pretty much everything.

      1. First time I’d seen a reference to them, and it didn’t take long to see it is a http://www.watermellon.

  28. People care about the flag? But it was designed, like, a hundred years ago.

    Anyway… Rock, flag and eagle!

    1. 1960 actually

      1. … as a very minor modification of an existing design which dates back a lot farther than that.

  29. Huh. Just eating some cereal (I’ll let you guess which one) and it dawned on me.

    There are not enough women pilots.

    This is an outrage.

    Discuss.

        1. O fer.

    1. all i can think about is cereal now.

    2. Hitler-o’s?

  30. I’d say the police should also be aware when laws have been deemed unconstitutional/unenforceable – but since they aren’t even required to know how many tail lights the state code requires on a motor vehicle . . .

    1. “When ignorance is bliss, ’tis folly to be wise.”
      Arresting people is bliss.
      Ignorance allows you to arrest more people.
      QED

  31. No responses? I’m beginning to think there really aren’t any libertarian women.

  32. I love articles like this. This is the sort of thing I want to see more of at Reason.

  33. Good to see that Playa is checking in and better to see that a lawyer had the sense to check for evidence:

    “Dad cleared of incest rape thanks to ’50 Shades of Grey'”
    […]
    “When the daughter did take the stand three days into the trial, McCulloch was ready. She gently began the cross-examination, getting the daughter to admitting that her father was strict and that she was annoyed at him for “ruining her life.”

    When McCulloch questioned if her anger led her to make up the rape story, the daughter “wavered.”

    McCulloch then compared the text of her police interview to passages from “50 Shades,” and the daughter broke on the stand like a pair of cheap handcuffs. She tearfully admitting making up the entire story to get her father in trouble.”
    http://www.sfgate.com/crime/ar…..146202.php

    I have a hard time imagining what I’d do with an offspring like that.

    1. I don’t.

      You want to hurt me so badly that you’d do something like that – well, I may not retaliate but you’re going to have to find a new place to live. Hopefully a relative will take you in but if not, then you’re going into foster care because I certainly don’t want you around.

    2. How did I get mentioned in the same comment as incest????

      1. My apologies; not you:
        PapayaSF
        Please forgive me; I do not presume you share opinions.

        1. I’m really shy about my opinions, but just this once, I’ll go on the record as being against incest.

          However, if you were to search Papaya’s foot locker, there’s a 50/50 chance that you might find some incest comic books.

  34. Prepare yourself for an onslaught of “Cybernonsense

    Shorter version = “People around the world now doing the shit we’ve been doing for 2 decades. Therefore = panic.”

    Some of this shit is so dumb, it almost feels like the Govt itself gins up these stories about “hacks” to justify some new “CyberDefence Initiative ALPHA”-budget-proposal. Like Reagan’s “missile defense shield” v.2.0

    1. Snowden’s take makes sense to me (via ars):

      Circumstantial evidence and conventional wisdom indicates Russian responsibility. Here’s why that is significant: This leak is likely a warning that someone can prove US responsibility for any attacks that originated from this malware server. That could have significant foreign policy consequences. Particularly if any of those operations targeted US allies. Particularly if any of those operations targeted elections. Accordingly, this may be an effort to influence the calculus of decision-makers wondering how sharply to respond to the DNC hacks. TL;DR: This leak looks like a somebody sending a message that an escalation in the attribution game could get messy fast.

      1. So things are messy and they’re gonna be messy? And stuff!
        WIH does that mean?

        1. I thought it was pretty clear, he’s saying that this leak could possibly be a shot across the bow, warning the US gov to be careful about getting itself into a pot-kettle situation when it comes to accusations of electoral meddling.

    2. This is actually a big fucking deal (if it’s what it seems).

      Everyone knows the NSA has the capabilities to do this stuff, but they don’t know HOW.

      I hope the shit that was stolen is out of date.

    3. This is actually a big fucking deal (if it’s what it seems).

      Everyone knows the NSA has the capabilities to do this stuff, but they don’t know HOW.

      I hope the shit that was stolen is out of date.

      1. GLITCH IN THE MATRIX!!! SHUT IT DOWN PEOPLE, THEY’RE ON TO US

        1. No I’m not!

          Err… no they’re not!

  35. Today in retarded progressive social media memes

    Insurance companies are evil, which is why we’ve spent the last 6 years defending tooth and nail a law that forces you to do business with them!

  36. The judge has dismissed the charges. http://www.kcci.com/news/judge…..e/41224468

    1. Let the lawsuits begin.

  37. This is why people hate cops so much, because they so obviously let themselves be used at tools by the ruling class scumbags. People hate the cops because they do not work for all the people, but only for the few who have more money and influence and power, like they’re the Winged Monkeys of the Welfare/Warfare State.

  38. Food must be off the floor so it won’t attract bugs and rats. Eggs must be cooked because the elderly will die if they get salmonella poisoning.
    How do you measure if a care giver is kind? How do you arrest someone over if the facility is “nice”? This guy sounds like he has no experience in the real world.
    Is he saying the president should have the right to declare any public building project be made and BAM- without anyone else’s input it is so? Sounds like he wants a monarchy. Cause that is working so well in Qatar with the building for the World Cup- slavery, destruction, God only knows how safe any of it will be. Yes, monarchy will fix everything.
    And all this has nothing to do with repealing old laws.

  39. Ironic quote from Phelps v Iowa Summary Judgement:

    “Finally, the Court addresses Phelps’s request for injunctive relief to prevent Iowa law enforcement officers from enforcing the flag desecration and misuse statutes. The Court declines to grant such relief based on the assumption that the Iowa prosecutorial authorities will give full credence to this Court’s holding that ?? 718A.1A and 723.4(6) are unconstitutionally overbroad.”

    Judge Robert W. Pratt, in failing to restrain law enforcement as he should have, gave license to these pigs to continue their unlawful acts and claim ignorance afterwards. He shares in the blame for this offensive incident.

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