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November 17, 2006


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I wonder if the NSA has his phone number ?

oops, meant to add ..

if not, then AT&T can probably be of assistance. Just dial 911.

yes, you are correct. It is an outrage! More has to be done about this. I am sending more letters to congress and sharpening up my evil eye to the masses.

We are at war. Stuff happens. Collateral damage can be expected. Innocent people get tortured. Remain positive. Everything is being handled by the Authorities.

Since when is it reasonable to comply to a reasonable request to present identification? I wannabe on this jury when this case comes to trial.

9/11 changed everything.

The fascination with fire in the mind of the timid and academically-disciplined becomes a fascination with the theory and process of oxidization, the tearing away of all those happy molecules into their constituent atoms, back to carbon. La!
Social theory pyromaniacs. La!
Watching the integuments of mass cohesion frazzle and twang. La!
Binding the planks of the ark they intend to sail through the flames. La! Hey-ho! La!
Did Noah complain about the flood, after? La?
With all that real estate out there, mucky as it was? La?

cops have been learning how to do this stuff long before the war on terror started, as a lot of poor people know. if you look at the video they aren't only tasering him, but they're doing pain compliance holds too. pain compliance is a euphemism for torture. it's meant to be an alternative to lethal force, but in practice it's an alternative to civility. this is a consequence of the militarization or professionalization of everyday life that long preceded 9/11, and manifests itself not only in the changing nature of policing, but also in the prevalence of Jeeps and SUV's in suburban driveways and the obsession with casual sports gear like bicycle helmets and uniforms, etc...

Oops. Now back to Whit Stillman's Metropolitan, which is the only movie ever made that has LOLFOTF moments and running gags about Jane Austen.

with the (possible) exception of bicycle helmets, I think klaus' 1st point above is very accurate. The war On Iraq and the possible belief that "everything changed" (as well as his point about"professionalization", which is also valid imo) has given all sorts of people license to act more like goons than they have before, whether in action or attitude ... and it's a baseline element of USian culture.

Bicycle helmets are very useful .. they protect your noggin. But it's not as much fun riding a bike with a helmet on ... no one uses them in Holland or China, and there aren't huge problems ;-) Just another excuse for the cops to check your pockets ...

I'll continue to digress with bicycle helmets. Ted and coming back from Denmark says he isn't riding his bike to work because it seems too fast, that may be in part why it isn't as much of a problem in Holland or China.

Helmets and cycling is a positive shift in my view. When I used to ride to High School no one wore helmets, even racing they wore these helmets that were thin strips of leather, almost useless in a crash. Now, I almost never see anyone on the streets without them. The bike path, sometimes, but rare on the street. It's self preservation. In the twice that I've made contact in the past several years, both times it was an SUV, both sideswipes in an illegal pass on the right. The first one knocked me down and I would have caught him in traffic but my chain was off after the crash. The second time I managed to stay up and get stopped after bouncing a shoulder off his quarter.

Isn't it the case that riot control, "The Miami Model," is now based on military models? In other words, the military and the police are converging n terms of equipment, training, and now chain of command with the Military Commissions act putting the National Guard under the President in the event of widespread civil unrest, as can be expected, in times of rapid climate change, and the pending economic chaos. It is going to take "pain compliance," "submission holds," riot control, and holding pens galore to stem the unrest when there is not only too little work, but too little stuff for money to buy, such as water and food.

"If someone enters a library or computer lab, starts screaming and carrying-on like a maniac, you'd fully expect the authorities to control the situation. You'd want him to be removed from the premises. Right?"

Well yes, if someone was just being a dumbass carrying on in the library when you're trying to study, you probably would hope someone would get the person out of there. However, no one at all would be hoping the person would get TAZERED of all things! Besides that, he wasn't even carrying on and yelling so much until AFTER they tazed him. I think I'd be yelling and crying and mad too if someone had just tazed me.

It goes on to say "So, when this individual was asked to leave, threatened to be tasered but continued to rant, he suffered the consequences. This isn't about inappopriate action by the police, it's about inappropriate behavior by a vitriolic student who was all worked up and yelling anti-establishment rhetoric..."

Now watch the video again closely...
In the first few seconds of it...
You hear them asking him to leave and get up
You hear him yelling "don't touch me"
You hear them saying again to "get up"
Then they taze him and he starts screaming
It then sounds like he sort of yell-mumbles something about that he has "a medical condition"... I'm not sure what that's about since no articles about the whole incident have touched on that particular point heard in the tape.
But anyway, he doesn't start yelling about the patriot act and what not until after he's been tazed...

Now it does seem silly if he didn't opt to show his ID when they asked to see it, he was kind of inviting trouble. But the question I have, which the news articles aren't making entirely clear, is whether or not he even had his ID on him, and how much time did they even give him to present it, explain his situation, or try to get up and leave before they tazed him? Could it be his ID was out in his car or something and he could have gone and gotten it? Could it be he could have presented a drivers license or some other form of ID and the library staff could have double-checked his name in their system and proven he was a student? There's so many other ways how the whole situation could have been dealt with. The whole "tazer" thing just seems so quicky a knee jerk reaction... especially to all the people who witnessed the event
If, as some articles have reported, he was causing "resistence" by going limp when they tried to get him to leave... why could they not have just used "force" in the sense of grabbing him and dragging him out, like bouncers do at clubs and such? Surely those 4 or 5 big policemen could handle a 23 year old college student?
Also there are some arguing that it was all a setup conspiracy somehow to bring in race relations and lawsuits and essentially frame the police and so forth..... but even if some students had masterminded that they were going to upset the police by not showing a library ID card and then videotape what would happen next... tazing the guy, (and not only that but doing it repeatedly!) pretty much has the cops framing themselves! I doubt even students masterminding some test of trying to see how the police might act to an unidentified middle eastern guy in the library could have anticipated he'd get hurt with such a weapon in the process.
Bottom line is regardless of whether it was the student being stubborn and inviting trouble or not... the use of a tazer so quickly and so many times was undoubtably excessive and an overuse(abuse) of power/force on the cop's part!

Of course, I agree, Soul-Catcher. Events like this will continue, and gradually today's students will wake up from their consumer trance. You only have as much political liberty as the authorities allow, as a matter of practice. That space gets smaller every year. Until we push back it will continue to erode. The pushback will take many forms. Here we attempt satire. So far we have not been tasered, but who knows. Stuff happens in a time of war, as Rumsfeld said. I am not sure that Gonzalez will protect us from Homeland Security, or that trials will be involved; taking liberty from Americans has proven so easy, why should the authorities stop now?

RE "professionalization."   This happened Thursday. Written yesterday. Weird.

Back to the movie...

Do not touch the roots of the flower beds, Mole, and you may be allowed to burrow about in peace, beneath the well manicured lawn.

It seems a safe bet that individuals whose ID cards list their names as "Mostafa Tabatabainejad" or something similar would and will be reluctant at least some to let the swine-bots know that such were their names. Given it's not that paranoiac for young Arab males to imagine any day the round-up of all young Arab males commencing. Given the track record of picked-up renditioned tormented tortured, held and released after months and months with no adjudication possible, that is the sorry lot of more than a few so named.
So there's that.
The steady dissolving of social connectivity evolves pig-enforcement agents who are more Orc than mankind.
The gamble behind the awful trajectory as always is that these collapsing excitements lead to a rising, eventually - the phoenix up out of their combustible hopes, the fruit of their labor the soft little creatures - so cute! - sheltered inside the black egg, that dark compelling fortress, larvae wriggling in their infancy, for which the hearty mindless yeomen in their kevlar suits pursue their dangerous foes across our screens.
To make the world safer for the little buggers. Not us, them.

Sounds right. This is the democracy, this the Freedom, for which we are at war with the world.

I see the UC police and the library doing their jobs, which is to make sure the safety of everyone is not compromised. Mostafa Tabatabainejad could have easily made everyone's job easier by showing his ID or leave the library peacefully. He didn't have to be combative, go limp, argue, or try to incite the crowd to riot against the police. He chose his actions and he paid for it. This has nothing to do with his race or how he looks like. As a member of the minority myself, I am ashamed of his actions before and after. He got off too lightly and is still trying to cause troubles. UCLA should seriously consider disciplinary action against this trouble maker. In additional, he should be charged and jailed for interferring with the duties of the law enforcement officers and assault and battery on the law enforcement officers. All I got to say to this pathetic trouble maker is "SHUT UP AND GROW UP".

Well said! Now where's your ID, dude? This is a decent space for discussion and we don't want anyone cretins or troublemakers here. Snap to it or get out.

ID now! Do you hear me? I said ID now!

.. and we only tasered you, didn't shoot you .. get up, NOW !

Don't say anything and walk out quietly and the handcuffs won't chafe a bit.

Yo, Laser2006, s'up? Don't be scared of us. We're not really going to taze you, even if it would be pretty funny to see the look on your face. JJ and I just don't care for smartasses, who think they're above the law. We need rules in dangerous times like these and these rules must be very clearly understood. You need to understand them. We're trying to help you, but you're making it hard.

I figure we can resolve the issue of you showing some ID in one of two ways. You can do it like a gentleman. JJ and I will show you the respect you deserve. Or you can try to be a hard guy and find out how JJ and I handle hard guys. That's the social contract, my friend. They taught it to you in school. How much of that shit have you ever had a chance to use?

All I would ask, Laser, given your education, is to draw the rule that you wish enforced. What is the rule, and then see if you can live with it. Is the rule that anyone without an ID at UCLA or any other college should be dragged away by force, and tasered if they object? Your name is Wei? Is China the minority you mention? Are you from mainland China? If so, perhaps, you are used to this kind of totalitarian overreach. Here in America, until recently, it was relatively unusual, except in the deep South, in the Jim Crowe era, where trouble makers were lynched.

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