Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Eight Arrests and One Death in Oregon

So Ammon Bundy is in jail, where he no doubt belongs, and without a massacre. Bothers me that one man was killed, though. First, because I hate to see anybody die over such a farce, and second, because he becomes a martyr for the rest of them. All of them face a federal felony charge of 
conspiracy to impede officers of the United States from discharging their official duties through the use of force, intimidation or threats.
Which sounds like it probably carries a lot of jail time. Remains to be seen what happens to the folks left at the refuge.

I wonder what inspired the FBI to act now? Did they get tired of waiting for negotiations that were going nowhere?

As I have said, I can't take these people seriously, and I find the rage they inspire in some quarters baffling. Why send a SWAT team to arrest clowns?

But there is a very serious issue here, the sense among many Americans that their own government is an occupying force. Hundreds of thousands and maybe millions of Americans fear Washington much more than they fear Teheran or Pyongyang. The weird blow up over the Jade Helm 15 exercise showed how many there are, and how deep their paranoia runs. I worry that this distrust might over time grow into a real threat to our democracy, and I worry that responding with overwhelming force to Bundy-style provocations would only spread and deepen that distrust.

I'm glad the Citizens for Constitutional Freedom were broken up without too much violence, but I really wish somebody had been able to talk them into going home.

4 comments:

David said...

It's true that hundreds of thousands of Americans do fear their own government, and that's disturbing. But on Pyongyang and Tehran, my impression is much of this group are violent xenophobes, and the one thing they'd like to see the government do is bomb more foreigners. Of course, their attitudes are very ambivalent. Many probably see 9/11 as a US government conspiracy, not a hostile act by foreigners. Nevertheless, this issue of xenophobia seems to me to be one of the main differences that exist between left and right-wing extremists; it's perhaps the main thing that defines the difference.

G. Verloren said...

I wonder what inspired the FBI to act now? Did they get tired of waiting for negotiations that were going nowhere?

As I understand it, the authorities had been allowing the militants unfettered access in and out of their occupied compound. It seems they waited until the militia leaders left the compound so they could isolate them from the rank and file.

Then they set up a road checkpoint and let the hotheaded idiots with rifles drive into it and predictably refuse to comply with instructions, thus alloying them to make an arrest.

G. Verloren said...

Alloying? Holy bizzare typoes, Batman!

leif said...

Why send a SWAT team to arrest clowns?
Clowns with Kalashnikovs and AR-15s need special handling and a go straight to jail / don't collect $200 card.

The language concerning what they're accused of, appears to have originated in the KKK act of 1871: https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Ku_Klux_Klan_Act_of_1871

Guess I'm not a robot, either. If you don't trust the link, just search it.