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Weapons of Mass Destruction

There was a huge hubbub around a raid in Michigan this week of members of a “multi-state Christian militia.”

Disclaimer. I have no idea as to the guilt or innocence of the people involved, (nor am I looking for a discussion about that), nor do I have direct knowledge at this point as to the Constitutionality of the investigation, raid or arrests. Additionally, I am firmly opposed to the use of violence to achieve political ends, and if what is alleged is true, I find the planned acts to be despicable.

Here’s what caught my attention.

Federal authorities say the 21-year-old was a member of a militia group known as Hutaree, or Christian warrior, that plotted to kill a police officer sometime in April and hide homemade bombs along the funeral processional route in hopes of taking out scores of others.

Stone’s father, David B. Stone, 45, of Clayton, and his stepmother, Tina Stone, 44, were among seven militia suspects who appeared in U.S. District Court in Detroit on Monday, charged with attempted use of weapons of mass destruction and seditious conspiracy. [emphasis added]

If you go to the article and click on the link at right, you can read the indictment (which reads like what a seven-year-old would get sent to his room for by his parents as punishment for exaggeration).

Weapons of mass destruction? If we’re calling IEDs weapons of mass destruction, then what do we call chemical or nuclear weapons? Weapons of a whole bunch of mass destruction?

Whenever I see law enforcement come out with a proclamation like that for the press, I immediately become suspicious of their entire case. If they’re exaggerating that much about that point, then how much of the rest of it is true?

This is unhealthy in establishing trust with the public, and unfortunately, it is a major national trend. We see it all the time, and I know that it’s in part a way of technically piling on charges in order to have more leverage (which is bad form in itself), but the only reasons to tell the press are to prejudice the public against the defendants and provide favorable press for law enforcement (the public thinks “Boy, if the person’s being charged with all that, they must have caught a really, really bad guy.”).

My sensitivity to it may be due in part to the time I’ve spent studying the drug war, where this kind of thing happens constantly. I never believe police reports in the press anymore.

In fact, I have my own internal translation that I do with press reports of arrests that you may find useful:

  • Possession — twig found under mat on car floor
  • Trafficker — passed the joint after it was handed to her
  • Dealer — “Hey, can you pick me up a dime bag when you go?” “Sure.”
  • Big-time dealer — no longer lives in mother’s basement
  • Kingpin — has someone working for him
  • Cartel — has someone working with him
  • Criminal Organization — wife sometimes answers the phone
  • Accomplice — gave friend a lift
  • Conspiracy — two guys talking while stoned “Hey, we should sell some of this.”
  • Money Laundering — sold drugs and then used the money to buy a pack of cigarettes
  • Drug House — any house that no longer has a front door
  • Grow-op — a seedling, which could grow into a large marijuana plant, which could produce over a pound of pot, which could be rolled into more than 2,000 joints with a street value in excess of $5 million.

Oh, I forgot one…

Why should we believe anything they say?

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28 comments to Weapons of Mass Destruction

  • Cannabis

    So true. This is the same as telling us that marijuana is a narcotic. Here’s the logic:

    Heroin = narcotic
    Heroin = Schedule 1
    Marijuana = Schedule 1
    therefore
    Marijuana = narcotic

    Just because they believe their lie doesn’t mean that we do.

  • Just me

    “Why should we believe anything they say?”

    Exactly Pete. Its amazing to me. A few years ago , my veiw of the government and LE wasnt as synical as it is today. After my fathers death and subsequent investigation into cannabis and its medical possiblities , the drug war/prohibition , all wars past present, conspiracies on part of government , LE coverups and botched drug raids , ECT ECT ECT …on and on it goes. Why the hell would anyone in our postion believe anything they say.

  • denmark

    When I was a hippie dippie, or so I thought, the mantra of choice was:
    Question Authority

  • ezrydn

    Since they can’t find any weapons by that name, they’ll use the name on the weapons they CAN find.

    “Rocket’s red glare?” You’re turn is comin’.

  • Mike R

    An “aquaintance” just got tangled up with his annual mushroom grow, which generally leads to a weekend of laughing and admiring mother nature with the wife. Instead, said “aquaintance” gets a 1st person view of the criminal justice system.

    Hazmat came to properly dispose of all the dangerous rice flour and bird seed that was involved in maunfacturing the illegal drugs. The risk to the surrounding community due to the proximity of the “psilocybin lab” was deemed to be considerable.

    I’m sure the 3.7 grams of dried mushroom particulite and powder collected from the bottom of his food dehydrator could have pulled in hundreds of dollars on “the street”, which inevitably would have gone towards funding some Al Queda terror cell-or-other in YOUR neighborhood.

    Child Protective services were immediately contacted. Two minors where exposed to the “dangerous chemicals” that were “confiscated from the home” – aka flour, birdseed and water. Both mother and father are now “listed” as having “willfully endangering the lives of their children” via neglect (what the hell is willful neglect, asks the little giant) by way of exposure to rice flour and birdseed.

    The fact that OSHA had psilocybin classified as generally safe and nontoxic is irrelevant. When advised of the fact that truly toxic fungus can be found at a moments notice absolutely ANYWHERE outside.. even the goddamn playground at the local elemenary school! …but sir.. THOSE fungi are not illegal….

    The “meth lab” mentality now officially encompasses ALL drug related activity. It is reported as such in your local newspaper so that your neighbors will treat you like you intentionally set out to blow up their children.

    The End.

  • denmark

    Maybe I should have written,
    “the chosen mantra” was Question Authority

  • Hey, Denmark, how does, “turn on, tune in and drop out” work for you these days?

  • the hallucinogenic compound quinuclidinyl benzilate (aka QNB, BZ) is a chemical warfare agent that is also legally classed as a “weapon of mass destruction”

    hate to sound like an old fart, but where i come from the only things that count as “weapons of mass destruction” are nukes.

  • ezrydn

    Not to be tacky. Why is it when a group like this is caught and they give us the line-up of mugshots,I suddenly hear the twang of “Dueling Banjos?”

  • Just me

    Hey we just got a big name to help our fight, Sting, the actor/Musician. Now we need more big manes to see this war for what it is…A FAILURE!

    http://www.drugpolicy.org/homepage.cfm

  • Just me… I saw that this afternoon. We’ll see. Let’s see if Mr Sting can put together a Concert Against the War… no shortage of cannabis consuming musicians to perform.

  • Ed Dunkle

    Sting’s participation in the cause really highlights all the other celebrities who refuse to take a stand. They’re just as cowardly as elected officials. “Don’t want to risk disturbing the status quo and possibly endanger my career!”

  • Chris

    Anyone else see the latest episode of south park?

  • Ed… at this point it’s easier to deal with those who’ve come out of the smokey closet, no? Many musicians and groups are pretty open about their love of ganja… and I’d love to see the Asylum Street Spankers open with We’re Winning the War On Drugs.

    I’ve used the Hutarees (maybe our version would call themselves the Hootarees and their plot would be far more sublime) to make my counter-culture point. One blogger said that these folks had a right of assembly and free speech. I didn’t disagree but I pointed out the hypocrisy of not standing for everyone’s right to speech and assembly… like, oh… the Rainbow Gathering folks…

  • weapons of ass destruction

    Oh the horror of the underwear bomber and now the Joe Neckbone 9 keep me safe mommygov protect me! Here is all my rights just keep me safe (sniffle).

  • kaptinemo

    I’ve been perusing the Web since I learned of Sting’s missive, and have been trying to find out who made the extraordinarily lame response:

    “”He should stick to singing and not meddle in matters he doesn’t understand. We do not need pop stars coming out and making irresponsible statements like that.”

    Curious how the DARE mouthpiece isn’t identified…perhaps out of embarrassment.

    Because the rejoinder to Sting’s eminently reasonable call for examining the laws for the damage they do really is so lame. Dana Carvey’s Church Lady couldn’t have delivered a more stereotypically disdainful and pridefully ignorant response. They really are ‘on the ropes’ if this is the best they can do…

  • Just me

    Ya I would have to agree Allan , we’ll see. I’d like to see a concert against government corruption..period! The only thing standing between liberty and tyranny is those of us willing to speak out against it. The drug war definitly is tyranny.

  • Just me

    Mike R : they would consider my kitchen sink ” dangerous chemicals ” when I get lazy by those criteria. EWWW!

  • ezrydn

    I just made a crock pot full of pinto beans and hamhock. Ya wanna talk about “WMDs?” LMAO

  • kaptinemo

    “The only thing standing between liberty and tyranny is those of us willing to speak out against it. The drug war definitely is tyranny.”

    Of course, the prohibs don’t see it as tyranny. But then, being authoritarians, they probably don’t see what they do to their own children regularly as tyranny, either. And that’s the problem, because they see nothing wrong in their actions regarding their own childrens’ behavior, they extend that unconsciously to their dealings with others.

    Drug usage to them is tantamount to childish behavior that ‘challenges authority’…which must be ruthlessly crushed in order to maintain the ‘natural order’ which includes dominance of the ‘adults’ (prohibs).

    Of course, there are hypocrisies evident in trying to implement prohibition, such as the issue of not wanting to call drugs (such as alcohol and nicotine) ‘drugs’…which so many prohibs use and many are addicted to. Which is immediately seen through by their targets as being hypocritical. But that doesn’t put the prohibs off stride at all, for with them, it’s the application of power that determines who’s ‘right’, not whether they are rationally correct.

    That is the kind of mindset prohibs regularly demonstrate: “Because I’m the mommy, that’s why!”.

    In the adult world, that has no validity, for obvious reasons.

    Yet that is EXACTLY the modus operandi of prohibs: accept my dictates unquestioningly, or suffer the consequences, because no matter how old you are, the degree of education and real world experience you possess, the amount of maturity you can demonstrate in your dealings with others, your responsibility in using psychotropic substances, etc. you will always be a child to them, in need of their uniquely qualified supervision.

    They are Heinlein’s ‘controllers’, as opposed to the vast majority of those who have no such desire to direct others’ lives according to their own beliefs. Needless to say, the latter group’s members contains those whose belief in cognitive liberty leads them to use psychotropics.

    So, who’re the real adults here?

  • Dante

    Pete:

    About your list of translations, I would like to add one:

    Child Endangerment – the police broke into your house and shot your kid.

    Protect & Serve (Themselves!)

  • denmark

    It’s an appropriate mantra Jackl. We’d be there if the economy hadn’t taken a nose dive. Then again, being a part of ending the war on drugs is important to us.

    Saw the south park episode. Don’t watch that stuff and only took the time to see what it was about. Definitely won’t watch anymore, doesn’t appeal to me. Found it interesting they named Colorado.

    Unfortunately the law still has some credibility, at least to the brain dead or kiss asses, but I really believe the public is catching on. Now if the public at large could just muster up the courage to speak up loudly and effectively.

  • GUy#1

    Coming from the only country that has ever used WMDs on civilian populations.

  • Just me

    GUy#1 ; Thats sarcasm I hope. 🙂

  • GUy#1

    Meant nuclear weapons, what is the agreed upon definition of WMDs? Besides this case.

  • […] (112)  Las armas de destrucción masiva […]

  • Note also the emphasis on “improvised” explosive devices. A claymore mine? Ok. Homemade stick of dynamite in a tin can? Not ok. The difference? Arms corporations make money off the non-improvised weapons.

  • Actually – that’s not quite right. If a US soldier in dire straits unpacked a mine, repacked the explosives into some sort of improvised device and saved his unit thereby – do you suppose he’d be hauled up to be court-martialed for deploying a weapon of mass destruction?

    Of course not. So IEDs-as-WMDs are when *they* are doing it.