Day by Day from Ferguson

The sheer flow of ‘you can’t make this stuff up news’ requires one to at least pick out a few noticias each day in order to celebrate the insanity of living under the present regimes fairly early in the 21st century. LSW will try to keep this page up to date.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Ferguson, not sure what state of play the area finds itself in, this Sunday mornng. After Missouri Governor Jay Nixon named Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson to oversee security in Ferguson, the adjective ‘calmer’ appeared in reports describing the  ‘state of play’ in Ferguson.

On Saturday mornng, however, the shaky calm was rocked when police shot tear gas at protestors who were throwing rocks and debris at officers. Unclear to LSW if these officers were local police or state police. Later, looting ensued, five stores were hit before protestors themselves stepped in to stop the looting, according to Buzzfeed whose timeline is the basis for this timeline.

Later on Saturday, police released a video which purportedly shows that Michael Brown was involved in a robbery.

An update in Vox contains more detailed and more understandable summary.

Saturday, August 16, 2014:

–  “Department of Defense provided surplus military vehicles, rifles, pistols to local police departments.” USA Today article, about the Pentagon arming St. Louis country law enforcement agencies with rifles and pistols.

The article states, “Ferguson Police Department is part of a federal program called 1033 that distributes hundreds of millions of dollars of surplus military equipment to civilian police forces across the United States. The materials range from small items, such as pistols and automatic rifles, to heavy armored vehicles such as the MRAPs used in Afghanistan and Iraq.”

Further, “Since the creation of the 1033 program by Congress in the early 1990s, the program has distributed $4.3 billion of excess equipment, ranging from innocuous office supplies to bomb-disposing robots and other advanced technology. The flood of military supplies — along with the continuing drug war and grant programs from other federal agencies that provide military-style equipment — has pushed the culture of police forces far from its law-enforcement roots.” All quotes are from a USA Today article by David Mastio and Kelsey Rupp on August 14, 2014.

For more information see Militarization of local enforcement.