Posts Tagged ‘murder’

Scalise Shooter Hodgkinson Had Assassination List

Friday, June 16th, 2017

James T. Hodgkinson, the shooter of Rep. Steve Scalise and four others, had a list of names to be assassinated on him:

The Daily Caller is reporting that an assassination list was found on Hodgkinson, and if true, had three members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus on it:

James T. Hodgkinson, the shooter who opened fire on dozens of Republican congressmen and staffers at a baseball practice in Alexandria, Virginia, on Wednesday, had a list of Republican names in his pocket that was recovered by the FBI, The Daily Caller has learned.

The news that the shooter had a list of names suggests the shooting was not a random outburst, but instead appears to be a premeditated political assassination.

The list was written out on notepad paper and found in the shooter’s pocket, according to multiple sources with intimate knowledge of the situation, who spoke on condition of anonymity, citing the sensitivity of the investigation. The list of names included Alabama Rep. Mo Brooks, South Carolina Rep. Jeff Duncan and Arizona Rep. Trent Franks, TheDC has confirmed.

Had Hodgkinson succeeded and not been killed by capitol police, that would likely have changed his charge from Second Degree Murder to First Degree Murder.

Scalise remains alive but in critical condition. Says his doctor: “I would say that when he arrived, he was in critical condition with an imminent risk of death.” Scalise now faces “additional operations to manage abdominal injuries and other bone injuries.”

LinkSwarm for May 12, 2017

Friday, May 12th, 2017

Lots of border control news at the top of today’s LinkSwarm:

  • “According to figures released yesterday, the number of illegal aliens crossing the U.S. southwestern border has dropped by an astonishing 76% since President Trump took office.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Authorities Arrest 1,378 in ICE-Led Operation Targeting Gangs.” More: “The majority, 955, of those arrested were U.S. citizens, while 445 were foreign nationals from around the world.” Also: Three were Obama’s “Dreamers.”
  • “If the Trump administration is serious about controlling illegal immigration and illegal alien driven crime, it should begin by going after employers who hire illegal aliens. The move would not only help to prevent the exploitation of illegal immigrants, but it would also help to foster higher-paying jobs for American workers.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Maryland Democrats shocked, shocked to discover that legal immigrants who followed the rules aren’t wild about sanctuary city BS for illegal aliens. (Hat tip: Louder With Crowder via The Other McCain.)
  • “James Clapper: Still no evidence of any Russian collusion with Trump campaign.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • From the House to the Big House: Former Florida Democratic Representative Corrine Brown was found guilty on fraud and tax evasion charges.
  • Democrats had a real shot at winning the Omaha Mayor’s race…until the DNC came in and pulled all support to punish pro-life heresy.
  • “Aetna, one of the nation’s largest health insurers, has announced that it will exit all Affordable Care Act exchanges in 2018 after experiencing massive losses in 2016 and 2017.” (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • On the Democratic Party’s civil war:

    If Obama is really responsible for Democrat losses, then the party and its donors just bought first class seats on the Titanic. That’s why Democrat autopsies of the defeat remain so explosive. Blame can be apportioned to white people, to racism, Islamophobia and to Global Warming, but not to Barack Obama.

    Keith Ellison was the best messenger Sanders had to take a shot at Barry. Black loyalty to Obama is still the third rail of politics. And Ellison is one of the few black people in the Sanders inner circle. Obama’s pricey Wall Street speech offered the opportunity for a more direct attack from Bernie Sanders.

    “I just think it is distasteful,” Bernie slurred on CNN. “At a time when we have so much income and wealth inequality … it just does not look good.”

    The attack went to the heart of his differences with Obama. Unlike the Clinton era, the split is no longer between the left and the radical left. Obama and Sanders are both representatives of the radical left.

    But they don’t represent the same radical left.

    Bernie embodies the old left. Its mantra is class warfare. There is a great deal of talk about billionaires, working people and the ruling class. Obama pays lip service to that same rhetoric, but his is the program of the intersectional left. The intersectional left is far more interested in identity than class. It defines its organization around a coalition of racial, sexual and other minorities. Where Bernie wants to talk to the working class, the intersectional left wants to hear from transgender Muslim women of color.

    The differences aren’t just intellectual. They define the tactics and agenda of the Democrats.

    When Tom Perez, Obama’s DNC boss, recently read pro-life Democrats out of the party, he was following the Obama blueprint. Bernie meanwhile went on campaigning for a somewhat pro-life Dem. Bernie does not really care about abortion, gay rights, transgender bathrooms and the social issues of the intersectional left. The old Socialist follows the older slogan of the hard left. No war, but class war.

    Snip.

    Democrats and the left had long ago replaced pure class warfare with identity politics warfare. Intersectionality entirely displaced and demonized the old Dem white working class base.

    And the Dems paid the price.

    Obama’s reign torched most of the last of that white working class base. Trump’s victories would not have been possible if the Dems had not become a party of wealthy bicoastal urban and suburban elites who were out of touch with the South and the Rust Belt. And who were proud to be out of touch with a bunch of “ignorant racist, sexist homophobes” still “clinging to their guns and religion”.

    The clash between Bernie and Obama is also over the autopsy of Hillary’s defeat. Did the Dems lose because they failed to turn out the base as effectively as Obama had or because former Obama voters had come out for Trump? Should the Dems try to appeal to working class whites with a class warfare pitch or work harder to turn out the intersectional coalitions of minority voters?

    (Hat tip: Director Blue.)

  • The U.S. is arming Syrian Kurds fighting the Islamic State despite Turkish opposition. Good. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • 10% of French voters turn up at polls only to spoil their ballot in disgust.
  • Mark Steyn covers the French election:

    The French have voted to postpone their rendezvous with destiny. But kicking the croissant down the road means another half-decade of demographic transformation that lengthens the odds against ever winning the numbers to halt it….

    Yet the fact is that, with the arrival of President Macron in the charmed circle, the leaders of Europe’s biggest economies and of all the European members of the G7 are childless: Germany’s Angela Merkel, Britain’s Theresa May, Italy’s Paolo Gentiloni, and now France’s Macron.

    This would have been not just statistically improbable but all but impossible for most of human history. Whatever Euro-politics is about, it’s not, as Bill Clinton was wont to say, the future of all our children. Indeed, of the six founding members of the European Union – France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg – five are led by childless prime ministers: joining Merkel, Gentiloni and Macron at the no-need-for-daycare Euro-summit are the Dutch PM Mark Rutte and the Luxemburger Xavier Bettel. Mark Rutte is single and childless. Xavier Bettel of Lux is married, but gay and, hélas, for the moment without progeny….

    That’s the demographics of Western Europe writ small. The Eurocrats are a Continental version of the Shakers: They’re apparently forbidden to breed, and can only increase their numbers through conversion. From Nice to Cologne to Rosengård, a significant proportion of New Europeans seem to think that, au contraire, they’ll be the ones doing the converting.

  • Sally Yates was the real blackmailer.”
  • Nevada Democratic Senator Catherine Cortez Masto wants choose senators based on diversity rather than all those annoying elections. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Canada arrests 104 men on child sex trafficking charges. The Other McCain notices a certain pattern to the names of those arrested that will be familiar to those that followed the Rotherham child sex trafficking scandal:

    Suresh Patel, 49; Muhammad Jaffer, 22; Muhammad Sarchami, 31; Hernando Carvajal, 29; Intekhab Shaikh, 42; Sakhi Alekozai, 29; Shamim Abowath, 54; Ruchir Shah, 34; Nima Latifpour, 25; Sanjay Ninan, 42; Jaipal Sidhu, 26; Adeniran Adekola, 33; Ming Wong, 39; Zan He, 33; Segundo Fernandez, 54; Anpalagan Kanapathipillai, 39; Navaneetharan Packianathan, 25; Rajorshi Bhaumik, 34; Miguel Feliciano, 38; Virushan Premanathan, 25; Suhayl Rajan, 24; Sivanesan Veerasingam, 50; Jamshid Jalilian, 25; Zhi Situ, 22; Tejash Patel, 33; Quang Tran, 37; Ravikumar Ghandhi, 31; Ahmad Hassan, 21; Anshu Manocha, 33; Sivaratnam Sinnappillai, 39; Naidu Matas, 54; Paramjit Sandhi, 35; Hari Bhaskar, 55; Ramy Kawar, 39; Zu Liang Xiao, 28; Ali Mansourinajand, 24; Ramiz Multani, 25

  • AC-130 gunship now comes with a 105mm Howitzer option. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Wargaming a second Korean war. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • U.S. Air Force’s robotic X-37B space plane finally lands after circling Earth for “an unprecedented 718 days.”
  • UT stabbing spree followup: The stabber “was suffering from mental illness and didn’t seem to be targeting anyone in particular during his Monday afternoon spree, police said Tuesday.”
  • “‘Chicago Is A War Zone’: Police Suicide Rate Surges To 60% Above The National Average.”
  • Gun-blogger Bob Owens dead of apparent suicide. Unlike many in the blogsphere, I didn’t know Owens personally, but we did follow each other on Twitter. RIP.
  • Windows 10 on ARM supports x86 apps, and Microsoft says your 32-bit applications should run just fine. Won’t make me use it, but for some people…
  • Behold the #BowWowChallenge.
  • Bucket-eye view of critters drinking water.
  • Texas Stabbing/Shooting Followups

    Tuesday, May 2nd, 2017

    Here’s followups on both of yesterday’s Texas attempted spree-killers:

    Dallas shooter Derick Lamont Brown

  • The firefighter/paramedic he shot is still alive in critical but stable condition. “A bullet broke the firefighter’s leg and he lost a lot of blood. In surgery, he was resuscitated three times after his heart stopped.”
  • “A Dallas police officer, later identified as Sgt. Robert Watson, saved the firefighter’s life when he went in alone, pulled the firefighter out, put him in his squad car and took him to the hospital.”
  • Brown killed his godfather, 66-year-old Arthur Riggins. Still not seeing any report of the dead neighbor’s name.
  • Brown was “national minister of defense for the New Black Panther Party and once served as the chairman of that organization.” (As I reported yesterday.) Brown “also went by the name Brotha DK.”
  • More: “According to [Babu] Omowale, the founder of Dallas’ Huey P. Newton Gun Club, Brown was the Black Nationalist defense group’s gunsmith. “He put some of our weapons together and if we needed extra supplies or if we needed anything added to our weapons, he was the person who made that happen for us.”
  • Brown had “a long criminal history, including an assault charge, several DWIs, and gun offenses.” More:

    In 2008, he was involved in a car accident in Dallas, records show. Responding Dallas PD officers approached his vehicle. He yelled, “I’m high… I’m high and I have a gun!”

    Police arrested him for felony possession of PCP. Brown pleaded guilty and got two years of probation.

    Then, about two years ago, Brown obtained a concealed carry license from the state of Florida.

    In 2015, he was involved in another car accident in Dallas. This time, when officers approached the vehicle, they observed Brown “holding a loaded magazine in his (right) hand” and “a 9-millimeter semi-automatic handgun” in his left hand, according to records.

    In that incident, officers smelled what they thought was PCP. They arrested Brown for being under the influence of a narcotic and for unlawful carry of a weapon by a license holder.

    Brown went to jail and was released two months ago.

  • UT stabber Kendrix J. White

  • “The student killed in Monday’s stabbing attack at the University of Texas at Austin has been identified as freshman Harrison Brown of Graham.”
  • White was recently arrested for DWI and had taken Zoloft, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). There have been a small number of additional spree killings where the murderer was on a SSRI.
  • This piece, which suggests Kendrix J. White was an antifa protestor who deliberately stabbed frat boys, seems more speculative than not. And reports saying White stabbed “three whites and one Asian” appear to be wrong (or incomplete), as one black man (who did not appear to be badly hurt) was shown being carted away to an ambulance at the scene.
  • His Twitter feed doesn’t look like a typical Antifa supporter. Here’s one tweet he forwarded:

  • Weirdly enough, there were two other, completely unrelated stabbing incidents in west UT campus that same day. Plus a random dead body. (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • Stabbing Attack at UT

    Monday, May 1st, 2017

    What the hell is going on today? One dead, three wounded in UT stabbing spree.

    You can’t even blame the heat, as the last few days a nice cool front has been blowing through…

    (Hat tip: Dwight.)

    Update: Suspect in custody:

    Update 2:

    Unless this is the first five seconds of the arrest, why haven’t they already disarmed the suspect?

    Update 3: The person doing the stabbing was evidently a UT student.

    Here’s a Tweeting showing one of his victims being tended to.

    Update 4: Accused stabber’s name is Kendrex J. White, a 20-year old student.

    This Week in Clinton Corruption for August 19, 2016

    Friday, August 19th, 2016

    Too much Clinton Corruption news to put off a roundup this week, so enjoy this rather than the usual Friday LinkSwarm:

  • U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, the man who took down New York Assembly Speaker Shelly Silver and former Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos, is investigating the Clinton Foundation.
  • The Clintons are Grifters, and America is Their Mark.”
  • Where did the Clinton Foundation end and the State Department begin?

    At no time did the U.S. State Department ever say to Bill Clinton that any of his unbelievably lucrative speaking gigs represented a conflict of interest – even if there was reason to believe a foreign government or entities closely allied with a foreign government were paying. Recall the State Department praising the progress of Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan as the president’s ally invited Bill Clinton to give two speeches in exchange for $1.4 million dollars. The State Department’s generous assessment of Jonathan’s human rights record stopped after the last speaking gig for Clinton.

  • Five Clinton cronies who got special favors from Hillary’s state department. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Huma Abedin is the walking, talking, emailing embodiment of the conflict of interest between Hillary Clinton working as secretary of state while the Clinton Foundation laundered hundreds of millions of dollars in foreign donations. Let he who has never triple-dipped while pulling down a six-figure government consulting income cast the first stone…
  • Washington Post: “A porous ethical wall between the Clinton Foundation and the State Department.” Yeah, there was a “wall” there in the same sense there’s a wall between the grill and the front counter, with a nice big hole in the middle where things patrons have paid for can be passed through…
  • Mention uncomfortable facts about Hillary Clinton on CNN? Get your mic cut off. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • More sudden Clinton death syndrome?
  • Indeed, Gavin McInnes at Takimag has a more comprehensive roundup:

    Hey, guys, if you’re looking for murders, check out anyone who has ever crossed the Clintons. There are about 100 cases where some intern has slept with Bill or some lawyer knew too much or some investigator got too close and boom—he shoots himself in the back of the head at the top of a mountain at four in the morning.

    The media cared about the sheer number of cases when 57 women said Bill Cosby raped them. If we brought the Hillary kill list down to 57, you’d be dealing with only the really, really spooky ones. Like the one last month where a DNC staffer, who may very well have supplied Julian Assange with the classified emails that brought massive embarrassment to the party, was shot in the back of the head in the middle of the night.

    Seth Rich was talking to his girlfriend on the phone when a gunman came up behind him, shot him to death, and left without taking anything at all. Rich was in a nice neighborhood that I’m told hadn’t had a murder in six years. The Assange link got eye rolls from the left until he personally offered a $20K reward for any information leading to an arrest. A Dutch TV host pressed Julian on this and asked if it was a murder accusation directed at Hillary and the subject quickly died.

    The list of victims goes on and on and on, and Google is happy to tell you how serious the accusations are and how tenuous the link is.

    Some of the Clinton Body Count stuff is just stupid speculation (like random people killed near the Mena Airport, which ties into the whole CIA drug running/Octopus/Clinton conspiracy theory). But others do indeed make you go “Hmmmm.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)

  • Flashback: Hillary’s crooked cattle-trading deal. (Hat tip: Zero Hedge.)
  • How Hillary could destroy gun rights. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Hillary: Colin Powell said my emails setup was A-OK! Powell: Which part of non-classified was unclear? (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • More on the same theme:

    (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)

  • Ken Salazar, Hillary’s thug. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • You can’t expect the graft queen and her aides to take federally mandated ethics training, no can you? When is she supposed to find the time when there are all those favors to do for foreign benefactors? (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Austin’s Murder Rate Up 80%

    Wednesday, August 17th, 2016

    Well, this is not good news:

    Three homicides in the past 10 days. According to data from the Austin Police Department, the city’s murder rate is up nearly 80 percent from the same time last year.

    The Austin Police Association President Ken Casaday believes this upward trend is something the department needs to tackle immediately.

    “All you have to do is turn on the news. It seems like every night for the past several weeks its led off with shootings in north and east Austin,” said Casaday of the deadly shootings. “It reminds me of, back in the 80s and 90s, when we had a huge crime wave here in Austin.”

    Of the 23 murders so far in 2016, five are unsolved.

    Let’s take a look at the individual homicides this year (at least those up on the austintexas.gov website), starting with the most recent:

  • Unidentified female. “Suspects in this case have not yet been identified but are described as: One Black male, mid to late 20s, approximately 6’1” and 180-190 lbs. One Black female, late 20s to early 30s, approximately 5’9” and 220 – 240 lbs.”
  • Teqnika Moultrie, Black female (D.O.B. 11-23-85). Suspect: “Endicott McCray, a black male, 24 years of age.” (Since arrested in Atlanta.)
  • Felipe Leija, Hispanic male, D.O.B. 12-18-82. No suspects.
  • Felix Serrano, Hispanic male, (D.O.B. 11-20-50). “The only suspect description available is a Hispanic male who is thought to have been on foot around the noon hour.”
  • Alfred Matthews, black male, D.O.B. 2-24-88. “Murder charges are pending on Zachary Daniel Payne” who was apprehended, and appears to be a black male.
  • Sankirth Gundam, Asian male, (D.O.B. 5-11-92) “The suspect has been identified as 27-year-old Sai Sandeep Goud Kurremula, Asian male.” The apartment complex he was killed in is right next to the HEB I shop at.
  • Brandon D. Grant, Black male (D.O.B. 12/1/1985). “The suspect has not yet been identified.”
  • Joseph Anthony Lapaso, Hispanic male, D.O.B. 3-4-91. “APD charged Steven Johns with Murder and bond was set at $500,000.” Johns appears to be a black male.
  • Jose Angel Moreno, Hispanic male (D.O.B. 6-14-91). Though the austintexas.gov does not mention it, the suspect appears to be Bradford Gunn (a Hispanic male) and his girlfriend Brandi Nicole Harris (no description or mug shot available, mainly because the Statesman‘s booking photo gallery page is profoundly broken).
  • Gerald Leron Williams, Black male, D.O.B. 8-29-1992 (aka Ron Ron). “The assailant was described as a dark-skinned Black male, mid-20s, approximately 6 feet tall with medium build. The subject was wearing a black t-shirt and long denim shorts.”
  • Maria Ferrer-Mena, Hispanic Female (D.O.B. 10-26-1977). “The suspect is described as a Hispanic male with a light complexion, 5’8” to 6’0”, skinny build, and last seen wearing a grey hoodie sweatshirt and black basketball shorts.”
  • Russell Fulghum Jr., White male (D.O.B. 6-15-78), described as a homeless man. John Fredrick Mouton (a 22-year old black male) was charged with murder.
  • “Murder 8”: “You are not authorized to access this page.” Hmmmm. I’m guessing this was the murder of Haruka Weiser, the freshman dance major at UT, which was a national story. “Meechaiel Criner, 17, was charged with murder.” Criner is a black male.
  • Juan Jose Casimiro-Paxtor, Hispanic Male (D.O.B. 02-08-1990). “The suspect has been identified as Mario Garcia-Faustino, Hispanic male (26 years of age).”
  • Rigoberto Jose, Hispanic male (D.O.B. 02/08/1977). “The suspect has been identified as Osiel Benitez Benitez, Hispanic male, 42 years of age.” There were also two other people shot in the same incident.
  • Ishmael Mohammed, Other male (D.O.B. 12-02-1955). “Nikolas Ray Eller, White male, 38 years of age…has been charged with Aggravated Assault Felony 2.” (More info here.)
  • Jerry Don Summers, White male, (D.O.B. 06-30-61). “Suspect: Spencer Frank Carlton, White male, 52 years of age.” Also this: “The assault took place after Summers inappropriately groped Carlton’s wife while inside the Dogwood Bar located at 715 W. 6th St.” after which Carlton shoved Summers to the ground. Sounds like something that’s likely to get plead down to manslaughter, if that.
  • Carlos Swist, Black male, born 01/03/1973. “Arrested: Dedric Darnell Dixon, Black male, 44 years of age.”
  • David Loera, Hispanic Male (D.O.B. 07/31/1972). “The suspect was described as a White male, in his twenties, 5’11” – 6’0”, having a slightly muscular build, last seen wearing a camo hat, brown vest, dark long sleeved undershirt, and dark pants. The suspect vehicle was described as a newer model, dark, Chevrolet 4-door truck, possibly a 4×4.”
  • So what is the cause of Austin’s rising murder rate? Possibly just random statistical variation. Possibly the result of understaffing the police department. I considered the possibility that a “Black Lives Matter” reduction in policing and/or a refusal to deport illegal alien offenders might be factors, it’s hard to see that from the data. (And I haven’t delved into last year’s murder stats for comparison yet.)

    The city’s overall demographics are 47.1% white, 7.0% black, 36.5% Hispanic, and 6.8% Other. As elsewhere in the nation, crime victims and perpetrators of same are disproportionately black, with Hispanics slightly over-represented as both victim and perpetrator, and whites somewhat underrepresented for same.

    Life in Venezuela is Murder

    Thursday, May 12th, 2016

    In the course of this piece on Venezuela’s bankrupt socialist government using tanks against “paramilitary” opposition, I came across this tidbit of crime information:

    The homicide rate in Venezuela is surging again in 2016, the Prosecutor General’s office warned in its first quarterly report of the year last week. Venezuela suffered 18,000 homicides in 2015 according to the Prosecutor General, but NGO’s put that figure closer to 28,000 murders for last year.

    Even given that Latin American murder rates are generally higher than North America and Europe, that’s shockingly high for a nation of 30 million. In fact, both figures are more murders than for all of the United States for 2013 (the last year full FBI figures are available). And U.S. figures include such idyllic peaceful environs as Chicago, Baltimore and Detroit.

    And life for Venezuelans who aren’t outright murdered continues to get worse. “The experiment with “21st-century socialism” as introduced by the late President Hugo Chavez, a self-described champion of the poor who vowed to distribute the country’s wealth among the masses, and instead steered the nation toward the catastrophe the world is witnessing under his handpicked successor Maduro, has been a cruel failure.”

    What our country is going through is monstrously unique: It’s nothing less than the collapse of a large, wealthy, seemingly modern, seemingly democratic nation just a few hours’ flight from the United States.

    In the last two years Venezuela has experienced the kind of implosion that hardly ever occurs in a middle-income country like it outside of war. Mortality rates are skyrocketing; one public service after another is collapsing; triple-digit inflation has left more than 70 percent of the population in poverty; an unmanageable crime wave keeps people locked indoors at night; shoppers have to stand in line for hours to buy food; babies die in large numbers for lack of simple, inexpensive medicines and equipment in hospitals, as do the elderly and those suffering from chronic illnesses.

    But why? It’s not that the country lacked money. Sitting atop the world’s largest reserves of oil at the tail end of a frenzied oil boom, the government led first by Chavez and, since 2013, by Maduro, received over a trillion dollars in oil revenues over the last 17 years. It faced virtually no institutional constraints on how to spend that unprecedented bonanza. It’s true that oil prices have since fallen—a risk many people foresaw, and one that the government made no provision for—but that can hardly explain what’s happened: Venezuela’s garish implosion began well before the price of oil plummeted. Back in 2014, when oil was still trading north of $100 per barrel, Venezuelans were already facing acute shortages of basic things like bread or toiletries.

    The real culprit is chavismo, the ruling philosophy named for Chavez and carried forward by Maduro, and its truly breathtaking propensity for mismanagement (the government plowed state money arbitrarily into foolish investments); institutional destruction (as Chavez and then Maduro became more authoritarian and crippled the country’s democratic institutions); nonsense policy-making (like price and currency controls); and plain thievery (as corruption has proliferated among unaccountable officials and their friends and families).

    A case in point is the price controls, which have expanded to apply to more and more goods: food and vital medicines, yes, but also car batteries, essential medical services, deodorant, diapers, and, of course, toilet paper. The ostensible goal was to check inflation and keep goods affordable for the poor, but anyone with a basic grasp of economics could have foreseen the consequences: When prices are set below production costs, sellers can’t afford to keep the shelves stocked. Official prices are low, but it’s a mirage: The products have disappeared.

    When a state is in the process of collapse, dimensions of decay feed back on each other in an intractable cycle. Populist giveaways, for example, have fed the country’s ruinous flirtation with hyperinflation; the International Monetary Fund now projects that prices will rise by 720 percent this year and 2,200 percent in 2017. The government virtually gives away gasoline for free, even after having raised the price earlier this year. As a result of this and similar policies, the state is chronically short of funds, forced to print ever more money to finance its spending.

    Though much of it will be familiar to anyone who follows this blog, read the entire story, if only for the factory owner who got in trouble for not stocking his bathrooms with toilet paper as per union rules (because it was unavailable at government stores), only to get in even more trouble for “hoarding” when he bought it on the black market…

    Hutto Police Officer Murdered On Duty

    Wednesday, June 24th, 2015

    Hutto police Sergent Chris Kelly was was killed in the line of duty today after being run over by a suspect during a traffic stop. (The suspect is in custody.) Kelly was a USAF veteran, and left behind a wife and two children.

    Police work is deeply necessary for civilized society, and occasi0onally very dangerous…

    How Not to Commit the Perfect Murder

    Sunday, April 13th, 2014

    Here’s a pro-top for aspiring murderers: If you want to bump off your wife, don’t talk over murder methods with all the other paramedics you work with.

    Despite which, it still took seven years to indict and convict the guy.

    Massachusetts Criminal Justice System Unclear on the Concept of a “Life Sentence”

    Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

    The Massachusetts Criminal Justice System seems to be especially unclear on the idea that, if a career felon is in jail on “three concurrent life sentences,” you don’t let him out on parole. Their lack of clarity on that issue cost 35-year police veteran John “Jack” Maguire his life.

    (Hat tip: Say Uncle.)