I have been reading Radley Balko’s (Cato Institute) paper Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids in America, and nothing in it should surprise anyone. The US legal system is shot; so are those of many other “democracies”. The system that is meant to protect the people has consistently been used against them – drug raids, encounter killings, blatant violation of laws that protect civil liberties; the list is endless. If there is one thing people need to understand, it is this – governments have no business using the military (or similar outfits) against their own citizens. The military is meant for war; the police for peace; the mentality is different, and military style-policing is a slippery slope that has serious consequences – present and future. As a police chief says (in Balko’s paper) – “If cops have a mind-set that the goal is to take out a citizen, it will happen.” And that is what SWAT is all about; and using SWAT in the “War on Drugs” and “to handle suicides and domestic disputes” (a practice that has been stopped) is insane. Further, police officers who “just like to play war” should stick to video games and paintball tournaments, and stay far away from law enforcement which is serious business – not child’s play.
What we need is someone who will police the police – a citizen’s tribunal with powers to send policemen, judges and politicians including prime ministers, presidents and members of parliament to prison or even sentence them to death. Every person who is part of the legal system and who is involved directly or indirectly in a case of wrongful death or passage of laws curtailing civil liberties should be hauled before such a tribunal – mandatory sentencing, no outs. A body that will sit on top of the judiciary, executive and legislature watching over them – striking down laws and rulings that go against the principles of natural justice. Nothing else will put the fear of God into the crooks that run democracies. But the powers-that-be are hardly going to let that happen; keeping people frightened is what government is all about – you don’t argue with people who literally have the license to kill. Karl Popper says, “You can choose whatever name you like for the two types of government. I personally call the type of government which can be removed without violence ‘democracy’, and the other ‘tyranny’.” Modern day nation states with constitutions that don’t protect people from the government, and governments that are more interested in controlling people than protecting them are tyrannies.
In this context, I wonder what will happen if caffeine is included in the “War on Drugs”. Raiding newspaper offices and people’s homes would be more fun than simply going after “criminals”. Getting shot by a SWAT team for having committed the “crime” of drinking coffee – even better!