The Corruption You Can Fix

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15 Responses

  1. Avatar Saul Degraw
    Ignored
    says:

    What is interesting about civil asset forefiture is that it seems to have bipartisan supporters and detractors. The worst example I hear about usually come from rural or ruralish areas in red or purple states and also some big cities like Philadelphia.

    The big issue seems to be how much of a police department’s budget comes from CAF. In some areas, law enforcement gets to keep all of what they take and this creates perverse incentives. I’ve heard that when CAF goes to the general fund, the amount of CAF decreases substantially. Cities have issues when they can’t raise taxes.

    Again this shows the failure of the starve the beast strategy of the right-wing. Government just kept on looking for funding through alternate means because people still expected government to work.Report

  2. Avatar Damon
    Ignored
    says:

    There is, as I understand, a work around.

    Get the FEDS involved. Since they aren’t covered, if they are involved, you still get a slice of the pie when they seize the assets. Fixing THAT will be a bit harder.Report

  3. Avatar Jaybird
    Ignored
    says:

    I’m guessing the cops got greedy and started going after middle class stuff for it to have come to this.Report

  4. Avatar Joe Sal
    Ignored
    says:

    We don’t have a fruit hanging low problem. What we have is a ax deficiency.Report

  5. Avatar Mike Schilling
    Ignored
    says:

    The rationalization for civil forfeiture I used to hear was that it prevented drug kingpins from using their ill-gotten gains to hire high-priced lawyers to get them off. Of course, even that feeble thing doesn’t justify using it when no one is ever charged or taking pittances from people who in the event would rely on a public defender, or explain why not even a probable cause hearing was required.

    Though I’m surprised that the rationale for this injustice is that the crime was committed by the property itself rather than its owner. In general, property has more rights than people.Report

    • Avatar Oscar Gordon in reply to Mike Schilling
      Ignored
      says:

      Now if only property had the right to legal representation…Report

      • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Oscar Gordon
        Ignored
        says:

        Well, the old phrase that’s no longer is use is “the rights of property”. We can get there again. We’re so close.Report

      • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Oscar Gordon
        Ignored
        says:

        The government used to be able to force people to leave their homes, jobs, and families and choose between jail, exile, and being sent overseas to be shot at. That didn’t cause half the outrage I heard about it being able to make you sell it your house for full market value.Report

        • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Mike Schilling
          Ignored
          says:

          Technically, people who criticized the draft were thrown in prison and, when this case went to the Supreme Court, one of the judges said something about falsely yelling fire in a crowded theater and the court unanimously ruled that the guy should stay in jail.

          I don’t know how much that that resulted in limited outrage over the draft, but it probably had an effect worth mentioning.Report

          • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Jaybird
            Ignored
            says:

            That was WWI, which was before even I was born. During Vietnam, which I remember well, you could criticize the draft all you wanted, but it was still a fact of life, and the only people who talked about abolishing it were pinkos.Report

    • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Mike Schilling
      Ignored
      says:

      This created the sickest incentives.

      I can’t imagine saying “this person was found guilty of murder, therefore we are going to sell his car at auction”. “This other person was found guilty of burglary, therefore we are going to sell his television.”Report

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