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Sunday, December 10, 2006

December 10, 2006: Recent links of interest

Suburban poverty on the rise as more settle outside cities

Sunday, 10 December 2006 5:48 P GMT-05
The suburban poor outnumbered their inner-city counterparts for the first time last year, with more than 12 million suburban residents living in poverty, according to a study of the nation's 100 largest metropolitan areas released Thursday. "Economies are regional now," said Alan Berube, who co-wrote the report for the Brookings Institution, a Washington think tank. "Where you see increases in city poverty, in almost every metropolitan area, you also see increases in suburban poverty."

End the Other War Too

Sunday, 10 December 2006 5:32 P GMT-05
It is the very nature of victimless crimes that pushes the police to use unscrupulous tactics. In a victimless crime, such as an illegal drug transaction, there is no complaining witness, no one with an interest in reporting the crime to the police. After all, the buyer and seller willingly participate in the transaction. Thus, the only way the police can detect the criminal activity is to set it up themselves or encourage informants. But the opportunity for corruption in these tactics is immense. For example, informants looking for a favor from the police have an incentive to provide false information. You have only to read the newspapers to find details of corrupt law enforcement in connection with drug prohibition. In a free society adults have the right to ingest whatever they want. It's no business of the government. But if it makes such peaceful private activity its business, law enforcement will inevitably turn to measures that jeopardize the lives of people who have harmed no one else. Let's end this madness now.

Boomerang Effect

Sunday, 10 December 2006 5:20 P GMT-05
Police will not be surprised by this prediction. I have talked with cops about Fourth Generation war, and they “get it” much better than do American soldiers and Marines. Many have told me that they already recognize elements of war in what they are encountering, especially in inner cities. Cops have been killed while just sitting in their cruisers, because they represent the authority of the state. How big a step is it for those cruisers to get hit with IEDs instead of pistol shots? The Bush administration, as usual, has it exactly backwards. The danger is not that the “terrorists” we are fighting in Iraq will come here if we pull out there. Rather, American involvement in 4GW in Iraq will create “terrorism” here from among the people we have sent to fight the war there. Well educated in the ways of successful insurgency, they will come home embittered by a lost war, by friends dead and crippled for life to no purpose. Thanks to America’s de-industrialization, they will return to no jobs, or lousy “service” jobs at minimum wage. Angry, frustrated and futureless, some of them will find new identities and loyalties in gangs and criminal enterprises, where they can put their new talents to work.

Rescuer called composed, 'very cool'

Saturday, 9 December 2006 5:35 P GMT-05
He had the knowledge, determination, and a ladder, so John Culhane became the leader of a band of desperate people yesterday, frantically searching for fresh air as choking black smoke billowed around them.

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