Carpe Diem

Saturday afternoon linkage

oil1. Chart of the Day: US oil production in May at 8.43 million barrels per day was the highest in 27 years going back to April 1987.

2. US Drug War Casualty #21 for 2014: Utah SWAT Team Kills Drug Fugitive in Stand-Off.

3. Creative Destruction: Uber is now worth $17 billion and the ride-sharing company has big ambitions to become a global logistics company.

4. Creative Destruction II: By 2018, revenue from online video services like Netflix will exceed total movie box office revenues!!

5. The Taxi Cartel’s Government Enablers In ActionJust when you thought you couldn’t despise the Department of Motor Vehicles any more, Virginia’s DMV officials decided to wage an all-out war against free markets by sending cease and desist letters to popular passenger carrier companies Uber and Lyft, urging them to stop doing business in the commonwealth.

6. Economic Recovery: US rail traffic is booming – total shipments are up +4.3% YTD and for the most recent week +8.3% vs. last year.

7. Richard Branson: If I started a business and it was clearly failing, I would shut it down. The war on drugs has failed — why isn’t it being shut down?

8. In a comment about this Reason article “How Cops Became Baby Burners,” Steve Horwitz comments on Facebook:

Everyone who participates in [or supports] the “War on Drugs” should be forced to have a large version of the picture below taped in front of their desks or in their cars or in their homes for a full year. THIS is the face of the War on Drugs. THIS is what happens when you declare it acceptable to use violence to stop peaceful exchanges among consenting adults. THIS is what happens when you find such exchanges so offensive that you create Warrior Cops.

Is a society in which people are able to smoke pot, snort coke, and take meth REALLY worse than one in which we light babies on fire by throwing flash-bang grenades in their cribs? I think not.

baby

40 thoughts on “Saturday afternoon linkage

  1. Let me be an optimist for a change. Uber has passed the tipping point. Even the incumbent Luddites and their henchmen in government aren’t going to be able to stop Uber for very much longer.

  2. #6 My understanding is that the rail cargo is increasing because of oil shipments. Most of the oil shipments are done on rails owned by Warren Buffets company. Warren Buffet is a big Democrat donor – hence the lack of new pipeline approvals in the USA.

  3. I see a comment I posted either didn’t make it or was erased. Just want to point out that sometimes problems are really the parents responsibility for creating the situation in the first place.

    The parents blocked the front door with the toddler crib on purpose according to news reports and the parents themselves – per a CNN article I posted prior. The parents were also aware that they drove 2000 miles from home to move their four children into a home where they were well aware the residents were dealing drugs. They said they took the children into the back when drug trades went on, if we can believe they really did that.

    I certainly would not seek refuge in a relatives house where I knew they dealt in drugs – especially if I were moving my children in.

    The police may have been “bad” but I thought libertarianism was also about personal responsibility as well. The parents had no business putting their children in danger like that. I would also suggest this is a perfect case for child protective services to remove the children until the parents learn a bit about responsibility.

    This case – other than the sad polar bear picture – is really not the case you want to present as the standard bearer for ending the war on drugs.

    • I would also suggest this is a perfect case for child protective services to remove the children until the parents learn a bit about responsibility.

      So you don’t believe these parents have been punished enough by having their baby burned so seriously by criminal police incompetence that he must be kept in a medically induced coma? You want more?

      I’ll bet you would prosecute the parents of a child killed in an auto accident if you believed that the child wasn’t properly secured in an approved child seat.

      • I don’t believe the parents have learned anything from this. This is especially true since they now believe IG is all the polices fault.

        I am not a big fan of protective services either – but in this case I am not sure what a better option would be. Force the kids to be raised at a church for their own protection?

        • I don’t believe the parents have learned anything from this. This is especially true since they now believe IG is all the polices fault.

          Everyone but you understands that it IS the fault of the police, marque, including Habersham County Sheriff Joey Terrell, who has requested that all hospital bills for the boy’s treatment be sent to the county.

          I am not a big fan of protective services either – but in this case I am not sure what a better option would be. Force the kids to be raised at a church for their own protection?

          Luckily for the family, and for all of us I suppose, you don’t have anything to say about it.

          Your eagerness to blame somebody for this tragedy *except* the police, who were the proximate and direct cause of the baby’s injuries, seems to be clouding your ability to think clearly.

    • marque

      The parents blocked the front door with the toddler crib on purpose according to news reports and the parents themselves – per a CNN article I posted prior.

      Could you post a link to that report? I’m unable to find that specific information anywhere.

        • I did post the report – you can find it in the last thread about this topic on Carpe Diem.

          The previous link you posted to a CNN article about this story makes no mention of the door being blocked intentionally, that is, for the purpose of preventing entry. Are you just making stuff up? You seem to be attributing motives when none are evident.

          • It sure does, the baracaded the front door with a crib. If they didn’t put the crib in front of the front door to block the door, who did?

            If they didn’t it was one of the drug dealer relatives – even worse.

            Ron – you gotta realize this looks extremely bad for the parents, it if it weren’t for idiot libertarians egging them on, because of the right to deal meth around your kids, which is apparently in the constitution, they would have had all their kids taken away, immediately.

            Unfortunately there are now 3 innocent kids in their care, still being exposed to criminal activity and dangerous drugs and one victim of these parents in the hospital.

            Even worse – if the kid were shot up by gang members or a supplier, or customer as part of a drug deal gone bad, we wouldn’t even hear about it in this blog. There would be crickets – and innocent kids, toddlers, and even 19 month old toddlers who are called babies to make events sound worse are getting shot up all the time as collateral damage of the drug trade. And in that case I would feel considerable sympathy for the parents.

          • It sure does, the baracaded the front door with a crib. If they didn’t put the crib in front of the front door to block the door, who did?

            You are either having some trouble reading due to your biases, or you just have trouble reading.

            As I previously wrote,this link, which you posted in a comment on May 30th, makes no mention of a door being barricaded or intentionally blocked to deny entrance. A Pack and Play portable crib is a light, insubstantial construct that wouldn’t serve well to block a door.

            If you can get past your preconceived notions of how evil these parents are, you might try to imagine that at night, when all 6 family members are sleeping in one room, it might be convenient to place the baby’s crib by the door, which is locked, and won’t be used again before morning.

            I realize that doesn’t fit your narrative, but give it a try. IIRC, even you questioned why anyone would use a baby and crib to bar a door, an ineffective and dangerous method. You have your answer if you just let it seep in – they didn’t.

            It’s OK for you to admit that, despite undesirable and unfortunate conditions, the family made the best choices they could, given their circumstances. They aren’t guilty of any wrongdoing, and the baby is most certainly innocent of any wrongdoing.

            It is the police, and only the police, who, through negligence and incompetence, and not having important information about their target, including the fact that HE WASN’T EVEN THERE at the time of the raid, caused serious and perhaps fatal injuries to a baby. It is absolutely indefensible.

            Hopefully this tragic incident helps reduce support for, and show the urgent need to stop these Gestapo-like raids on people’s homes.

          • Even worse – if the kid were shot up by gang members or a supplier, or customer as part of a drug deal gone bad, we wouldn’t even hear about it in this blog.

            You’re probably right, but that’s because we aren’t surprised when gang members and drug suppliers and their customers behave badly and endanger innocent people, but it’s particularly outrageous and newsworthy when those we hire to protect us from criminals instead kill us and burn our babies.

            A little more caution and care in obtaining information would have easily prevented this tragedy.

            It’s entirely possible to arrest suspects when they are outside their homes, easily identified, and all alone instead of using these extremely dangerous militarytechnique of no-knock raids on houses where

    • That’s I was thinking: are drug dealers using children as human shields? If so then I don’t see why law enforcement should take the blame.

      • That’s I was thinking: are drug dealers using children as human shields? If so then I don’t see why law enforcement should take the blame.

        You might bother to read the articles before commenting to avoid making a fool of yourself. The drug dealer wasn’t there at the time of the raid.

  4. Did you post the correct article for Uber? Seems lime the article is about a venture capital deal for Uber vs being threatened by Virginia’s DMV.

  5. Given that 180,000 Americans since 9/11 have been killed by terrorists—that is to say, drunk drivers—I say let’s outlaw alcohol, which is a devastatingly addictive and destructive drug, and proven so by tons of empirical evidence.

    We can start by publicly horsewhipping liquor distributors, and putting bartenders in community service programs. Actual alcohol users can try to get a doctor’s prescription for the medicinal use of alcohol, but otherwise will subject to jail times and community service. Basically, if the government catches someone drinking, they can ruin their life through legal costs, incarceration or by seizing all their assets even prior to trial.

    As for the War on Drugs, we need to have a discussion with our Defense and State Departments. In Afghanistan they have created the greatest narco-empire of all time, a redoubt that now controls 90 percent of the world’s opium production, starting from zero when the American military occupation began.

    Or maybe our government has a new motto:
    “Marijuana bad; Opium good!”

    • @Joe Bannister
      > 180,000 Americans since 9/11 have been killed by [...] drunk drivers

      The drunk drivers didn’t force their “victims” to drive without seat-belts on, to drive non-IIHS-Top-Safety-Pick cars, to ride motorcycles, and to walk or ride bicycles while drunk.

      It takes two to tango, as Ronald Coase reminded us.

  6. Re Uber and all sorts of delivery services:

    Every day, in every major city, there are millions of people criss-crossing the city in cars. For $10 would you make a small detour, pick up a package, and re-deliver somewhere else on your route?

    Yes, there are some security concerns. But as I said before, the buyer of services can always snap a picture of the delivery guy and his car, and upload onto cloud, or the Uber website. If the delivery guy is crooked, he will not last long. Besides, most packages will be of little financial value.

    I bet a lot of people would say, “Hey, $10–that’s gas money of the day. And it takes 10 minutes out of my day.”

    And $10 is half for what a UPS/Fedex might charge for package.

    I am surprised that Uber or someone else is not trying this approach–or maybe regs prevent it.

    • joe-

      they don’t do it because the logistics don’t work.

      it killed urabnfetch, cosmo, and lots of others who tried it.

      you have to go to where the package is, leave the vehicle, go get the package, sign for it, go back down, drive to the dropoff, leave the vehicle again, deliver it and get it signed for, etc etc.

      the courier business is actually very difficult logistically.

      it’s a constantly changing traveling salesman problem (one of the hardest in AI).

      at $10 and without a great deal of process optimization, you will lose your shirt trying to do it.

      just the parking alone and the inevitable prices for that and or tickets will kill you. this is why couriers use bikes.

      the price for vehicle based courier service is more like $30 for 2 hour and $50 for direct. (at least in cities)

  7. Looking at those pictures of that beautiful little kid made me lose it. I can barely look at this. I hope his family starts filing lawsuits for damages against the police officers and law-enforcement agency responsible for this. I’m sure the kid’s folks will get their pound of flesh.

    • It’s just great if somehow legal action can at least partly rectify the wrong done to this child but if it’s a financial award it will be made through the taxpayers, not the police. The money won’t come out of the department budget or from the individual cops, who will still have their jobs and cushy retirement benefits long into the future.

      • “The money won’t come out of the department budget or from the individual cops, who will still have their jobs and cushy retirement benefits long into the future.”

        I just visited a couple of those retired police officers. One was shot and lost use of his left arm responding to a domestic call and the other one had his aorta ripped out of his heart when his car was rear-ended stopping to help a motorist on the expressway. I don’t know about cushy retirements because they both gross less than $3000 a month after 30 years of service and they are not eligible for Social Security. Neither can work another job such as security as retired police officers often do to supplement their pensions.

        I feel as bad about this kid as the kid who was shot in Flint, Michigan and killed when the drug dealer tried to collect on a debt from his dad and shot into the back seat of the car to scare the father into paying mistakenly killing the kid.

        • Walt

          “The money won’t come out of the department budget or from the individual cops, who will still have their jobs and cushy crummyretirement benefits long into the future.”

          OK, I fixed the offensive part, how would you respond now?

          • “OK, I fixed the offensive part, how would you respond now?”

            You see that is what I mean, Ron, about your all or none positions. Just because I did not think that the retirements were cushy did not mean, and I did not say, they were crummy. The police officers worked to their negotiated agreement for their retirements–no more, no less. I am glad we have the police officers protecting us.

            I hate that the kid got hurt; however, I am not going to automatically blame the police who were sent out to do a dangerous job without more information. If the police officers did not follow their training and rules, they should be held personally responsible, but otherwise this is case of the kid being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Hopefully, other parents will learn to keep their kids away from houses where drugs are sold or consumed because of the bad people that come around and/or police raids that are dangerous for all concerned.

          • Walt

            You see that is what I mean, Ron, about your all or none positions. Just because I did not think that the retirements were cushy did not mean, and I did not say, they were crummy.

            Heh! We’re off on a side road here, Walt. Police retirement isn’t the issue.

            chuck martel observed that a financial settlement to the family wouldn’t come from the police department budget or from the officers themselves, and that they would continue to have their jobs and their retirements (with no adjective).

            Rather than responding to the subject at hand, you veered off topic to objected to the use of the word “cushy” to describe the police retirement.

            I changed the offensive word “cushy” so it wouldn’t be a distraction from real topic, and then asked if you had anything to say about the rest of chuck’s observation.

            Now my word “crummy” is a distraction. Lets just say “retirement”, without the use of any adjectives.

          • Ron, I thought I responded that I support street-level police officers. I am able to separate policy and implementation of that policy while disagreeing with the criminalization of marijuana. If the police officers did something legally wrong, I fully support charging them with that crime.

            While the picture of the hurt child shows tragic events that can generally happen in life and police raids more specifically, it does not show any of the 55 police officers killed in duty so far this year (21 by non-accidental gunfire and most of the rest are car crashes). I’ve seen tragic work-related injuries, too, some much worse than even this child, and it never gets easy to see people hurt when you know it did not have to happen.

          • Walt

            If the police officers did something legally wrong, I fully support charging them with that crime.

            They threw a flash-bang into a babies crib and burned him so badly he may not live. Is that legal?

          • Ron, it is as legal as any other occupation injury, and you’ve stated in the past that can never be expected to be zero. The police were at work, the kid got hurt, and the police did not mean for that to happen. The kid looked bad, and it should not have happened, but I’ve seen much worse. I hope he gets well and lives a normal life.

          • Walt

            Ron, it is as legal as any other occupation injury…

            LOL Come on, Walt, you can do better than that. You don’t usually say things this stupid.

            What occupation was the child engaged in that got him injured? Sleeping in a crib at night in his home? That’s a new one!

            Are you really saying the police can injure people in the course of their work and call it “occupational injury?

            Let’s see: Police in pursuit code 3 run a red light and hit a girl on a bicycle. Occupational injury?

            A swat team breaks into the wrong house and kills an old man asleep in bed. Occupational injury?

            Another swat team breaks into the wrong house, an old woman defending her home from a violent home invasion robbery picks up her gun off the table and the police fill her full of lead. Occupational injury?

            Do you want to pull out that “not enough information” thing again?

            OK, let’s see: I roll a large rock down the hill and it crushes a pregnant woman at the bottom.
            ‘Gee, it’s not my fault – I didn’t know she was there”. Am I absolved of any liability?

            “I didn’t know the gun was loaded.” That’s always a good one.

            Is that enough? Will you immediately take back that dumb comment or shall I continue?

            The police were at work, the kid got hurt, and the police did not mean for that to happen.

            Oh. well, in THAT case, it’s OK.

            The kid looks bad, and it shouldn’t have happened, but I’ve seen much worse.

            I’m sure the parents will be comforted to hear that Walt Greenway has seen worse injuries.

            You are a real piece of work, Walter.

    • Ken

      Chuck is right. This carelessness will stop when officers are prosecuted. Taxpayers are yet another innocent victim in these stories.

  8. Let us not turn this baby into a pawn in the war on the war on drugs. That sonds like something the Piers Morgans of the world might do.

  9. re: ‘7. Richard Branson: If I started a business and it was clearly failing, I would shut it down. The war on drugs has failed — why isn’t it being shut down?‘…

    Hmmm, interestingly the same standard isn’t being set on the so called war on poverty which is 50 years old come August…

    Why is that? I wonder how many needless deaths were caused by the breakup of families that was part and parcel of the war on poverty?

      • The War on Terror is actually the eternal war on your wallet“…

        No joe it isn’t, its just another extortion scam laid on the productive citizens in this country as part and parcel of the wealth transfer scheme that we know as the federal government…

  10. Certainly the “War on Drug Abuse” is not being waged at all properly. However, would responsible adults choose to break the law and put themselves or their children in harm’s way? What parent thinks it is ok to bring their child to a war front?
    Drug abusers (addicts) choose destruction even when it is not administered through law enforcement. I live in an area with a high population of meth addicts and pot-growers. Shall I start to list all the violence they commit on each other and their community? How about the violence and neglect they commit on their children? One can read about it every day in the police blotter. And every day law enforcement is asked to clean up this mess and then persecuted when there is a fall-out such as this.
    Too complicated to just lay the blame on one party. But certainly there is a LOT of responsibility laying on the parents.

    • ama

      However, would responsible adults choose to break the law and put themselves or their children in harm’s way?

      The parents had not broken the law. And, according to statements, they were not aware of the drug activity until they had moved in, and in fact were packed up to leave the next day because they didn’t want their children in that environment.

      There were no lawbreakers in the residence at the time of the raid. Through negligence and incompetence the police weren’t aware that their suspect wasn’t even there at the time of the raid. Seems like something important to know before breaking into someone’s house in the middle of the night.

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