damnum absque injuria

April 30, 2004

‘Hat of the Day: Chip Frederick

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 12:33 pm

By now you’ve probably heard or read about the criminal behavior of at least six members of the 800th Military Police Brigade. All are allegedly guilty of misconduct which, if proven, would qualify them for a long, long period in prison, preferably under conditions comparable to the ones they inflicted on their prisoners in Abu Ghraib. Such criminality, in and of itself, does not a warrant a ‘Hat, as this conduct proves the person is evil, not stupid. However, one of these alleged criminals, Army Reserve Staff Sgt. Chip Frederick, has told 60 Minutes something so asstastically stupid as to earn himself a ‘Hat whether he is guilty of any crimes or not. Per the BBC:

The station spoke to one of the six soldiers charged, Sergeant Chip Frederick – a reservist whose full-time job is as a prison officer in the US state of Virginia.

Sgt Frederick said he and his fellow reservists had never been told how to deal with prisoners, or what lines should not be crossed. “We had no training whatsoever,” he said. “I kept asking my chain of command for certain things… like rules and regulations. And it just wasn’t happening,” he said. He said he never saw a copy of the Geneva Conventions – which govern the treatment of prisoners – until after he was charged.
[Paragraphs reformatted, emphasis added.]

Time for an informal reader poll.

  1. Have you read the Geneva Conventions and/or any Army regulations that supplement them aso POWs or other detainees held by the U.S. military?
  2. If your asnwer to #1 was “yes,” skip this question. If it was no, do you believe that Army regulations and/or the Geneva Conventions permit a POW’s captors to:
    • Attach wires to his genitals and tell him he’ll be electrocuted if he steps down?
    • Force him to simulate with other inmates?
    • Sic a dog on him?
    • Strike him, or order another inmate to do so?
    • Write something obscene (or, for that matter, anything at all) on his skin?
    • Take photos of him naked, with a snickering soldier of the opposite sex pointing at his privates?/li>
  3. of how you answerd #1 and/or #2, fill in the blank. Ignorance of the law is _______________________.

If convicted, these soldiers should imprisoned by the U.S. military for a long time, and should then be handed over to the Iraqis for any further punishments the Iraqi government may find appropriate. If the eventual Iraqi state happens to be a stable democracy that will treat them with any modicum of decency, great. If not, too bad; perhaps their own outrageous conduct is part of the reason. Either way, and regardless of whether he is convicted at all, Chip Frederick’s incredible stupidity should cost him both of his jobs, and should be permanently enjoined to eschew the handling of any sharp objects without adult supervision.

UPDATE: Roger Stanson, a commenter to Citizen Smash’s entry thinks there has been a “noticable [sic] silence” on this topic in the Blogosphere. I don’t know which blogs Roger read this morning, but I think it is safe to assume that he did not read any of these.

April 29, 2004

Watcher’s Council

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 8:25 pm

The results are in. Congratulations to King of Fools for the winning Council entry, “Creating Terrorists,” and to Kim du Toit for the winning non-Council entry, “Dubya the Dummy.” Honorable mention to Michael Williams for managing to get two entries nominated in the same race.

Hahn Lied, Valley Died

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 4:55 pm

Via BoiFromTroy and L.A. Observed:

When L.A. residents voted on Valley secession in 2002, Mayor Hahn threatened that a separate Valley city would have to pay more for water and power. Turns out, DWP planned to raise its rates no matter what.

April 28, 2004

More Well-Trained Dogs

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 12:28 pm

Today’s Dog Trainer shares the wit and wisdom of three letter writers who know everything there is to know (or at least, everything they think there is to know) about the war in Iraq:

  1. Seth Masket of Los Angeles completely misses the point of this Michael Ramirez cartoon, and harping instead on an irrelevant detail: it referred to President Roosevelt instead of Truman.
  2. Thomas D. Penfield of Cardiff-by-the-Sea takes the Iraq-as-Vietnam analogy one step further, by extending Peter Arnett’s time-honored lie about Ben Tre in Vietnam, and applying it to Fallujah.
  3. Judy Pang Palos Verdes Estates plays the “chickenhawk” (non-)card, and further argues that any government act contrary to her own political preferences is “illegal.”

Well done, Seth, Thomas and Judy. All three of you have no clue what you are talking about, but I do thank you for playing. Judging by the unanimity of these three letters, is it safe to assume that no one who supports the war in Iraq reads the Dog Trainer anymore?

April 27, 2004

True Lies

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 7:06 pm

We all know George Bush was lying when he said Saddam Hussein had WMD, but here’s a thought: is it a lie if it turns out to be true?


Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 5:32 pm

This guy is a hoot. So far, bidding is up to $910, with two new bids coming in even while I was preparing this entry – probably more by the time you read it. At this rate, the guy’s going to end up turning a profit.

Double-hat tip: Lachlan and Spoons.

UPDATE: Sold, to absolutsth, for $3,850.00. I had a hunch that the $99 million bid wasn’t going to hold up.

You’re a Bad Man, Charlie Brown

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 1:02 pm

Following the passage of H.B. 04-1279, Denver has temporarily stopped killing innocent dogs of politically incorrect breeds. Unfortunately, rather than roll over and play acknolwedge that they are dead, the city is suing for its right to resume the hideous practice. Their basis for the suit, aside from simply being sore losers, appears to be Article XX, Section 6 of the Colorado Constitution, which authorizes home rule cities to enact ordinances on matters of local concern, which ordinances may “supersede within the territorial limits and other jurisdiction of said city or town any law of the state in conflict therewith.” [To view the Colorado Constitution online, go here, and then select “Colorado Constitution” in the left pane.] In other words, Denver is claiming that the regulation of potentially vicious dogs is a matter of purely local concern, which the state cannot override.

This article from The Denver Channel, quotes City Councilman Charlie Brown pontificating thusly:

“We have the police powers to regulate what kind of animals we want to keep in the city and county of Denver,” Brown said. “We can make changes if we choose to do that, but we will do that as a city council, not as a state Legislature.”

He may be a clown, that Charlie Brown, but he’s not alone. Apparently, not only is the entire Denver City Soviet Council behind him, but in 1991, the appropriately named Justice Mullarkey wrote there was “no question” that Denver’s breed ban was a matter of purely local concern. The main question now, I suppose is whether the fact that the Legislature has now declared the matter an issue of statewide concern may change that result; or if not, whether enough other Supreme Court Justices are able to see through that mullarkey.

As I read Art. XX, Sec. 6 and the case law notes below, it seems there are only two possibilities here. Either the regulation of potentially dangerous dogs is a matter that the state may declare to be a statewide concern, or it isn’t. If it is, Denver’s idiotic ordinance is clearly preempted. If it’s not, and animal regulation really is a local issue as a matter of constitutional law, then this “home rule” thing is a two way street. If cities can exempt themselves from a preemption provision, they can exempt themselves from any other statewide laws relating to animal control, as well. How would Denver like it if another “home rule” city decided to gut the statewide laws protecting citizens against vicious dogs, and some of those truly vicious dogs ended up in Denver? If that happens, the Denver City Council will have nothing but itself, and the fragile egos of its current members, to blame.

Infotel Update

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 12:46 pm

Justene has been served with a demand to disclose the names, addresses and God-knows-what other information she doesn’t have about certain commenters who posted comments about Infotel. It seems that these bozos and their lawyers at McConomy Liverman not only expect Justene to know this stuff; they also expect her to pay full coach (or worse) fare to fly to Montreal in time for a Friday hearing on 3 days’ notice.

Apparently, Ted Frank, the top Infoscammer whose address is 5101 Buchan, Suite 250, district de Montreal, Province of Quebec, H4P 2R9, still doesn’t get it. When you run a shady operation like this one, all publicity is not good publicity.

Helmets Are Your Friend

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 12:19 pm

If I hadn’t worn a helmet in December, I’d be brain damaged. If I hadn’t worn one today, that piece of bird crap that landed on my visor would have ended up on my forehead, instead. I’m not sure which is worse.

April 26, 2004

I’ll Second That

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 5:25 pm

Maxine Waters laments the fact that her mother didn’t get an abortion.


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