Thursday, March 2, 2017

oh, you wouldn't like it...

The Big Sleep
novel by Raymond Chandler
1939, Alfred A. Knopf

The Big Sleep
1946 film
director, Howard Hawks
screenplay:  William Faulkner, Leigh Brackett, Jules Furthman

"Bogart can be tough without a gun."
Raymond Chandler

EDDIE MARS:  Who are you, soldier?

PHILIP MARLOWE:  Marlowe's my name, I'm a private detective.

MARS:  Who's the girl?

MARLOWE:  A client of mine.  Geiger tried to throw a loop on her, so we came up here to talk things over.

MARS:  Convenient, the door being open when you didn't have a key.

MARLOWE (with a slight laugh) -- Yeah, wasn't it?  By the way, how'd you happen to have one?

-- That any of your business?
-- I could make it my business.
-- I could  make your business mine.
MARLOWE:  Oh, you wouldn't like it.  The pay's too small.


The American Conservative

"Seven Reasons Police Brutality Is Systemic, Not Anecdotal"

July 2, 2014

------------------------------- [excerpt] ------------------- Darrin Manning's unprovoked "stop and frisk" encounter with the Philadelphia police left him hospitalized.... 

Neykeyia Parker was violently dragged out of her car and aggressively arrested in front of her young child for "trespassing" at her own apartment complex in Houston. 

A Georgia toddler was burned when police threw a flash grenade into his playpen during a raid, and

the manager of a Chicago tanning salon was confronted by a raiding police officer bellowing that he would kill her and her family, captured on the salon's surveillance. 

An elderly man in Ohio was left in need of facial reconstructive surgery after police entered his home without a warrant to sort out a dispute about a trailer.


These stories are a small selection of recent police brutality reports, as police misconduct has become a fixture of the news cycle.

But the plural of anecdote is not data, and the media is inevitably drawn toward tales of conflict.  Despite the increasing frequency with which we hear of misbehaving cops, many Americans maintain a default respect for the  man in uniform. 

As an NYPD assistant chief put it, "We don't want a few bad apples or a few rogue cops damaging" the police's good name.

This is an attractive proposal, certainly, but unfortunately it doesn't hold up under scrutiny.  Here are seven reasons why police misconduct is a systemic problem, not "a few bad apples":

1.  Many departments don't provide adequate training in nonviolent solutions.

This is particularly obvious when it comes to dealing with family pets. 

"Police kill family dog" is practically its own subgenre of police brutality reports, and most of these cases -- like the story of the Minnesota children who were made to sit, handcuffed, next to their dead and bleeding pet -- are all too preventable. 

Some police departments have begun to train their officers to deal more appropriately with pets, but Thomas Aveni of the Police Policy Studies Council, a police consulting firm, says it's still extremely rare. 

In the absence of this training, police are less likely to view violence as a last resort.

2.  Standards for what constitutes brutality vary widely.

"Excess is in the eyes of the beholder," explains William Terrill, a former police officer and professor of criminal justice at Michigan State. 

"To one officer 'objectively reasonable' means that if you don't give me your license, I get to use soft hands, and in another town the same resistance means I can pull you through the car window, [or] I can tase you." 

The special deference police are widely given in American culture feeds this inconsistency of standards, producing something of a legal Wild West.  While national legislation would likely only complicate matters further, local or state-wide ballot propositions should allow the public -- not the police -- to define reasonable use of force.  ------------------------------- [end, excerpt]


Blogging Congress  (continued)


District 1    Suzanne Bonamici     Democrat
District 2    Greg Walden     Republican
District 3    Earl Blumenauer     Democrat
District 4    Peter DeFazio     Democrat
District 5    Kurt Schrader     Democrat


District 1    Robert Brady     Democrat
District 2    Dwight Evans     Democrat
District 3    Mike Kelly     Republican
District 4    Scott Perry     Republican
District 5    Glenn W. Thompson     Republican

District 6    Ryan Costello     Republican
District 7    Pat Meehan     Republican
District 8    Brian Fitzpatrick     Republican
District 9    Bill Shuster     Republican
District 10    Tom Marino     Republican
District 11    Lou Barletta     Republican
District 12    Keith Rothfus     Republican

District 13    Brendan Boyle     Democrat
District 14    Mike Doyle     Democrat
District 15    Charles W. Dent     Republican
District 16    Lloyd Smucker     Republican
District 17    Matthew Cartwright     Democrat
District 18    Tim Murphy     Republican

Puerto Rico

At Large    Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon     Republican

Rhode Island

District 1    David Cicilline     Democrat
District 2    Jim Langevin     Democrat

South Carolina

District 1    Mark Sanford     Republican
District 2    Joe Wilson     Republican
District 3    Jeff Duncan     Republican
District 4    Trey Gowdy     Republican
District 5    Mick Mulvaney - Vacancy     Republican
District 6    James E. Clyburn     Democrat
District 7    Tom Rice     Republican

South Dakota

At Large    Kristi Noem     Republican


District 1    Phil Roe     Republican
District 2    John J. Duncan Jr.     Republican
District 3    Chuck Fleischmann     Republican
District 4    Scott DesJarlais     Republican

District 5    Jim Cooper     Democrat
District 6    Diane Black     Republican
District 7    Marsha Blackburn     Republican
District 8    David Kustoff     Republican
District 9    Steve Cohen     Democrat   


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