Blue Byline

A cop's perspective of the news and South Sound matters

Archives: Nov. 2013

Nov.
25th

Shameless politicians should practice what they preach

When Rep. Henry “Trey” Radel, R-Fla., pled guilty to one count of cocaine possession on Wednesday (TNT 11/20), it was something more than a political scandal.

It was a federal crime. A felony.

That fact does not seem to register with the public, perhaps because Radel is not the first elected official to be arrested on drug charges (though he may be one of the few to apologize).

Few may recognize the name Steve Katz, a New York Assemblyman arrested for marijuana (despite voting against legalization), or Willie Gandara Jr., a Texas County Commissioner arrested on federal

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Nov.
17th

Recreational drugs: what was old is new

“The Greeks and Romans used opium, anticholinergics, and numerous botanical toxins to induce states of mental euphoria, create hallucinations, and alter their own consciousness.”

The quote, lifted from the pages of Dr. David Hillman’s book, The Chemical Muse, suggests that recreational drugs were an accepted part of both the society that created democracy and the empire that bent its knee to Caesar.  

The notion that mind altering drugs have been around a long time should come as little surprise. Today, the demand remains strong, regardless of the so-called war on drugs (or perhaps

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Nov.
12th

Regional incarceration should be treated as a business, not a game

We live in a society of specialization. Look around and you will see niche businesses that employ experts in fields that did not exist a generation ago. With all of that expertise, you might expect that massively expensive public programs are being administered by professionals specifically trained for the task.

Of course I’m joking. Public projects are all too often managed by people (i.e. government officials) who have little or no training for the job.

On the national level, the Affordable Care Act website is a classic example. The site’s epic failure to launch can be attributed to the toxic interference

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Nov.
6th

Low casualties in LAX shooting highlight new police response

When a disturbed man pulled an assault rifle out of a bag in a crowded Los Angeles airport terminal and shot four people last Friday, it marked the 17th mass shooting just this year in the U.S. The phenomenon only seems to have increased in number since Newtown.

The recipe is the same. A suicidal man arms himself and takes out his rage on a surrogate, in this case the Transportation Security Administration. The violent spree left three people wounded and one man – Gerardo Hernandez, a TSA employee – dead.

But it could have been

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