When is violence acceptable in a civil society?

The murderers of Breonna Taylor have basically been acquitted — one cop is facing charges of endangering white people, because when he tried to gun down the black woman sleeping in her bed he missed, and bullets went into adjacent apartments. This was a decision that gave carte blanche to the cops to use violence against civilians and then claim it was justified.

The public has responded. Yesterday, two cops were shot in Lexington — the motivations have not been given, but the implication is that the protesters are escalating their tactics to shooting the police, although it’s not the case that protest organizers have been calling for such actions. I would not endorse lethal violence against cops, but I do think it’s far more warranted than the lethal violence currently being used against citizens.

It’s the reaction of Homeland Security that annoyed me more.

Acting homeland security secretary Chad Wolf condemned the shootings of police Wednesday night.

“Violence against law enforcement is NEVER acceptable in a civil society,” he tweeted, saying he was praying for the injured.

Oh. The police are inviolable, but violence against citizens is ALWAYS acceptable in a civil society? Someday I’d like to see the authorities insist on the principle of opposing violence against all people by their heavily armed police forces.

Of course, the two injured cops are out of the ordinary. The more typical news after these unjust court decisions is this: “Protesters take to the street in downtown Lexington, organizer emphasizes peaceful demonstration.”


  1. says

    Violence – not yet. Massive property damage to drain the jurisdictions finances and an economic blockade – sure. Defund the town defunds the police.

  2. Jeff Schmidt says

    How many state-sanctioned murders are necessary before action against the state is justified? Seems like we’re well past time now, given the history of unrestrained police violence against their communities. Government in this country is at the consent of the governed.

  3. erichoug says

    This is what bothers me about all of this. It’s the same with the Police as it is with incidents like Trayvon Martin’s shooting or Kyle Rittenhouse, or a lot of others.

    Ones side is seen as having an unlimited right to claim self defense. They can even instigate a situation and then claim self defense when they murder the person they started the fight with.

    Meanwhile, the other side has NO right to defend themselves.

    Breonna Taylor is a perfect example. Strange men busting into her house in the middle of the night but she and her boyfriend don’t have the right to defend themselves.

  4. says

    Wow. Good thing we’re going to replace Trump with somebody who didn’t vote for the creation of DHS, didn’t help run it for 8 years, didn’t let police unions write a crime bill in 1994 which stacked the legal system with prosecutors who refuse to punish police for blatant wrongdoing, hasn’t announced that police should receive more funding, and hasn’t called for mass arrests of left-wingers (but not Nazis). Because that would be sheer insanity and evil and anybody dumb enough to support such a person would absolutely be an example of everything wrong with this country and yes I am talking about Biden and anybody who thinks he’s worth supporting can sit on a spike and swivel and that means you, various commenters here who think you’re playing 11-dimensional chess by voting for an unindicted war criminal who has been wrong on every major issue for decades — again.

  5. Dunc says


    blockquote>“Violence against law enforcement is NEVER acceptable in a civil society,”<?blockquote>

    Remind me, how was your country founded again?

  6. says

    Also it should be kept in mind that we don’t know who shot those cops (and there do not seem to be any suspects). After all, it’s usually not the antifas who are armed, but the fas. False flag?

  7. weylguy says

    Oh, we’ve come so far, this Christian Nation™. Today there are no mass killings of blacks when a white woman claims she was whistled at by a black child, nor incensed mobs of armed whites roaming Tulsa-style through streets and homes, lynching and burning black men, women and children. We’ve whittled all that down to militarized white police perpetually murdering blacks on a smaller scale on the flimsiest of justifications, with a white justice system standing by to acquit those being accused of anything.

    Meanwhile, peaceful protesters can be assured that none of this will ever change, despite their best intentions. I’m still waiting to sea a police line facing down a thousand angry blacks legally armed with AK-47s in one of those open-carry Red states. Maybe next time.

  8. raven says

    Right, we don’t know who shot those two officers.
    It could have been another Boogaloo right wingnut shooting.
    They’ve done that before, recently in Oakland.

    2020 boogaloo killings – Wikipedia
    en.wikipedia.org › wiki › 2020_boogaloo_killings

    The attacks began on May 29, when a drive-by shooting occurred in front of a federal courthouse in Oakland, resulting in the death of a security officer contracted ….

    Or it could have been one of the protesters.
    We don’t know yet.

  9. says

    If violence against law enforcement is never acceptable, then violence against anybody else is never acceptable, either.

    Once you start treating one group of people differently than another group of people, that is the beginning of a fascist régime.

  10. christoph says

    Well, he did qualify his statement with the phrase “Civil Society.” So, there’s the loophole.

  11. kome says

    Peaceful protest, despite being everyone’s stated preferred way of doing things, doesn’t work when the thing being protested is systemic violence by police against civilians. Police in the US do not respond to peace, they see it as an invitation to brutalize citizens even more. Remember all the outrage at the most peaceful possible way to protest, taking a knee at a sporting event? By contrast, the L.A. riots effected positive social change in policing, because riots tend to force society to deal with what the rioters are upset about. I’m okay with violence against corrupt organizations (government or private).

    When a corrupt organization has made it abundantly clear that they will not respond to peace except as a further excuse to be brutal, then fuck it and fuck them. I cannot condemn anyone who shoots police anymore, because my country does not condemn police who regularly shoot us – and for all the justified focus right now on police shooting innocent black people, police still regularly get away with murdering innocent white people and latinx people and sexually assaulting women of all backgrounds, so no one is truly safe from police brutality except some slice of economically well-off cishet white guys. And I cannot support any effort that tries to work with or compromise with the very murderers who are making sure that black and brown people know our place is either under heel or underground.

  12. KG says

    Kenneth Walker, Breonna Taylor’s boyfriend, says he did not realise it was the police smashing down the door. But if he had, given their behaviour on that occasion and many others, that would surely have been additional justification for firing a shot at the intruders.

  13. Jake Wildstrom says

    Yesterday, two cops were shot in Lexington
    I hope you mean Louisville, or last night was more eventful than I realized.
    As for who did it and their motives, there’ll probably be some illumination of that soon. There’s video from the scene and a suspect in custody who seems (at least superficially) to resemble the shooter.

  14. jrkrideau says

    @ 5 Dunc

    Remind me, how was your country founded again?

    That was a case of free British subjects exercising their rights.

    Presumably forfeted with US citizenship. :)

  15. PaulBC says


    Good thing we’re going to replace Trump with somebody who [blah blah blah blah blah blah blah]

    If we manage to replace Trump with somebody who isn’t Trump, I will sleep somewhat easier that one night.

    Given that Trump has expressed his intent to remain in office using all means possible and is busy installing a SCOTUS fixer, I’m not convinced that a landslide victory will do it.

    Did you miss the freaking memo? Sorry, but whatever the merits or lack thereof, the big story is that presidential elections don’t work anymore. They are broken. This has been true in an obvious way since 2000. (Before then, they usually worked by lucky accident, since the electoral college was not a complete distortion.)

    And while there have been times to care about individual candidates, I think it’s a pretty stupid subject of discussion when Americans don’t even get a real vote anymore.

  16. PaulBC says

    I wanted to see a general strike after the impeachment nullification. COVID-19 briefly brought something like a de facto general strike and did anyone else notice how fast the rentier class shit their pants at the thought of the “little people” doing anything other than their assigned tasks.

    An intentional work stoppage would be very effective. Unfortunately, it requires solidarity, and also a lot of people just can’t afford it.

  17. Saad says


    Vicar is most likely a Trump supporter, using the tactic of trying to get people to not vote for Biden because they know on a blog like this, there’s no way in hell they can convince any of us to vote for Trump.

  18. F.O. says


    Oh. The police are inviolable, but violence against citizens is ALWAYS acceptable in a civil society?


    Maybe we should stop calling out the hypocrisy, acknowledge that they outright don’t give a fuck about anything but power, and act consequently.

  19. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    endangering people can get you prosecuted, while **killing* an innocent person in their bed, is justifiable because someone else shot at the officer? How is that just? I don’t understand

  20. JustaTech says

    All right, Vicar, I’ve got $10 for your campaign. Where are you running? Town council? School board?
    Are you working someone else’s campaign? Where can I send my donation?
    Heck, what’s your party? Socialist? Green? Something I haven’t heard of yet?

    You keep telling everyone what not to do, why don’t you offer up a specific and concrete suggestion of what to do?

  21. Timo Kaaarp says

    This is sickening, deeply, truly sickening. Please tell me 2020 can’t and won’t get any worse than this, if it does I’m going to find a cave to live in.

  22. Elladan says

    To the commenters complaining about The Vicar: have you considered actually responding to their points, rather than just whining about not-nice posting? Or just note that you’ve heard this before, as they are rather repetitive? I can’t say I hunt down every comment of theirs to read it, but this is the first time I’ve actually seen them insult you, as opposed to some political candidate they dislike. I can’t say the same for any of the responses I’ve read here.

    Those points are generally correct, as well: Biden (and Harris) are just about the worst possible candidates the Democrats could have picked for this situation, and reasonable people can actually argue they’d be worse than the monster in the White House now. The argument generally goes like this: “Why yes, the tangerine shitgibbon is a monster, but he’s also a feckless coward too lazy and indecisive to start any major wars. The record of Joe Biden suggests otherwise.”

    Personally I think Biden as an empty-suit figurehead for the donor class is almost certainly preferable to Trump’s z-tier mob boss antics, but the point is that this is actually an argument reasonable people can have, and that’s scary. If your first instinct is to start accusing the person making it of being a brownshirt rather than considering whether the argument has merit, you might be living in an echo chamber.

    I mean yeah, it’s kind of repetitive, I agree. But Biden (and Pelosi, and Schumer, and …) have really worked hard to earn that level of naked hatred, so I’m not going to complain when someone voices legitimate grievances.

  23. vucodlak says

    Find me a “civil society” and I’ll ask around.

    I don’t recommend shooting at the police for the simple reason that, unless and until a significant proportion of society is willing to engage in open warfare/insurrection against what is essentially an occupying army, nothing useful will come of it.

    I do agree with Marcus Ranum at #1 that property damage is a viable and apparently effective tactic against the powers that be. You’ll notice that authorities in Minneapolis didn’t come to the table until after the protestors made it clear they were mad enough to burn money-making parts of the city down.

    I think the most effective tactic might be to go into neighborhoods where the rich white people shop and shut the place down. A nationwide targeting of the holdings of megacorps (like certain exploitative retailers) would also bring results. If maintaining the status quo becomes too expensive for the rich, they’ll force the police to change. It’s not quite democracy, and it’s dysfunctional as all hell, but it’s probably the best shot of achieving change without an all-out revolution.

    @ Timo Kaaarp, #25
    Things can always be worse. With the current situation in the US, they’re pretty much guaranteed to get significantly worse before the year is out.

  24. patricklinnen says

    sockpuppet @ 26

    Find reasonable argument that Biden A Harris are worse than Trump and Pence. It has been almost 4 years and the only people trying to do so are the brown shirts.

  25. PaulBC says

    @28 Because… emails!

    Oh, wait, I grabbed the old card deck. Because… uh, Hunter, Ukraine, Obamagate! (whatever those are. But they are bad fer sure)

    Yeah, that’s gotta be it.

  26. Azkyroth, B*Cos[F(u)]==Y says

    To the commenters complaining about The Vicar: have you considered actually responding to their points

    1) what “points”?
    2) what makes you think we didn’t try that years ago when he first started this idiocy? What an arrogant presumption.

  27. Elladan says

    Insert insulting meme here #28:

    I did. Read my comment. You might disagree with it, but it’s a reasonable argument that people who are leftists, not brown shirts, are making right now in America today. It’s not the only one, though usually the other arguments have a certain smell of political maneuvering: “Another four years of neoliberal failure will get us president smiling turbohitler. At least Trump gets people mad.”

    If you’re unable to see that, you might need to think about things some more.

    P.S. Also, accuse yourself of being a sock puppet or a Russian Bot or whatever. I don’t know if this Vicar is intentionally trolling you, but I’m not.

  28. Elladan says


    Well, their point today seems to be “Biden and Harris are terrible on this issue and are personally responsible for many of the underlying legislative causes and support more of the same. Also I personally loathe them so much that I can’t stop posting messages of dripping hatred for them on the internet.”

    You could… Argue with that? Or not? It would at least be more productive than another FU Vicar post.

    Here, I’ll even try to get us started: police and prosecutorial misconduct of this sort is documented going back to before the civil war era, so if you want to blame that on Biden and the crime bill you really need to explain how the bill made things worse. You can say something similar about the awful bankruptcy bill with respect to student loans, which Biden has been getting a lot of flack for lately but which was already a disaster.

  29. patricklinnen says

    Meanwhile, Trump continues to refuse to a peaceful transfer of power when he loses. Continues to say the election is rigged. Continues to say that fascists are fine people and the BLM and antifas are the real fascists.

    Trolling libs is as about as far from actual goverance as Vicar’s Biden is worse than Trump argument for being reasonable.

    Trump wears his brown shirt proudly and Vicar is doing his best to cover for it. And you are doing your best to copy the Quisling. So yes, if the only argument you have is in copying Vicar and saying that is what is reasonable, you get to be labeled a sock puppet.

  30. PaulBC says

    @31 “leftists” had already stopped making “reasonable arguments” by this time four years ago. At least ones I knew were still yakking about “emails” (and Trump sure fixed the “shocking corruption” of private emails for government business… hahahahahaha). They were still hoppin’ mad at DWS though she had resigned her chair. They were always ready to explain what a naive “milquetoast” liberal I was. Right after the election, they were pretty quick to explain how Obama was no great shakes either.

    Some actual leftwing voices like Bernie Sanders and Noam Chomsky were smart enough to point out that it would still be better for Hillary Clinton to win, but most of the “leftists” I knew on facebook were parroting exactly the same attacks as the Trump campaign. Yeah, that worked out really well, didn’t it.

    And I don’t really know where Vicar stands, nor do I care. 2016 was the last chance to preserve some shreds of democracy and we blew it. I will still do what I can in 2020, but it’s gonna suck no matter what. I stopped reading Vicar’s comments today after a big WTF is he smoking? We’re staring at a burned down house and he’s telling us how important it is to put solar panels on the roof. Yeah, sure. Let’s have something other than a smoking ruin to discuss and we can have that conversation.

    I got angry in 2016 and tried to point out how many of the attacks against Hillary Clinton had come directly from a well-funded rightwing smear campaign that had been going on for nearly 25 years. I mean, I wasn’t even on the Russia train, and I think their role was somewhat less, but still there.

    In 2020 I don’t give a flying fuck. I will vote for Biden. I always vote for the Democratic candidate. Been doing it since I could in 1984. Sometimes the simplest strategies work best (in the game theoretic sense). But I just have to laugh off the people who still think they can make an issue of this.

  31. patricklinnen says

    From https://www.citizensforethics.org/press-release/new-report-president-trump-has-3400-conflicts-of-interest/ (You and Vicar still have no reasonable argument why this disqualifies Biden):
    – President Trump has made more than 500 visits to the properties he owns and profits from. The president’s frequent travel to and from his properties has cost American taxpayers well over $100 million.
    – President Trump has made more than 300 visits to the golf courses he owns and profits from, despite saying repeatedly during his presidential campaign in 2016 he would not have time for golf. His insistence on spending time at his properties has resulted in at least a million dollars in taxpayer money being spent at his properties.
    – 141 members of Congress have patronized Trump properties. These visits often coincide with events held by special interests or wealthy political donors that rake in millions of dollars for his properties.
    – Special interest groups, many of which have business before the Trump administration, have hosted or sponsored 130 events at Trump properties since he took office. Political groups have held another 88 events at Trump properties.
    – Foreign government-tied entities have held 13 events at Trump properties, and at least 145 foreign officials have visited one of Trump’s properties. Foreign governments have granted President Trump’s businesses 67 trademarks, and have awarded additional trademarks to his daughter’s business, all potentially in an effort to secure favorable treatment from the Trump administration.

  32. PaulBC says


    Here, I’ll even try to [blah blah yakkity yak blah blah yak yak yak]

    Here. I’ll even try to care (look of intense concentration). Ouch. I think I pull a muscle. Maybe I will try again when there’s an election where the specifics of the candidate actually matter.

  33. Elladan says

    patricklinnen #33: You… just admitted you have no idea what a sock puppet is? That’s kind of hilarious.

    PaulBC #34, making an actual point:

    The leftists I talked to around 2016 mostly didn’t give a fuck about Clinton’s email habits and never did (and even less so Benghazi). I certainly didn’t, and made a point to describe how idiotic the whole fake scandal was, and how decidedly mainstream and boring she was as a modern democratic politico. Obama but with charisma as a dump stat.

    The most persistent complaints about her? Absolute loathing of her history of post 9/11 war mongering, and her and her husband’s legacy of right wing triangulation as a strategy in the Democratic party. Throw in dislike of bipartisan trade deals (that seems to be regional IME) and occasionally with some anger for the 2008 presidential primary, perceived corruption, and so forth. Which are all basically valid and true points, but don’t explain the level of hatred she experienced. So, yeah, in the end maybe there was some cultural cross-contamination.

    Yes, sometimes people who hated her anyway repeated some right wing memes for the laughs (which I found frustrating too), but the salient point: the things they hated about Clinton, were the things right wingers want. You seem to be equating peoples’ personal dislike of a person with shared political beliefs, and maybe that was true among people you talked to but it absolutely wasn’t true where I was.

    I haven’t seen a single leftist seriously suggesting anyone in their right mind should ever vote for Trump or any Republican. Mostly people seem to be just debating whether to even bother voting (or voting third party) vs. trying to flee to Seattle or the country entirely before the death squads start in earnest at this point.

    Should you vote for Biden? Uh, I guess so, he seems markedly less likely to have you and your loved ones murdered. I’m certainly not going to expect anyone to find the prospect exciting though.

  34. PaulBC says


    Should you vote for Biden? Uh, I guess so, he seems markedly less likely to have you and your loved ones murdered. I’m certainly not going to expect anyone to find the prospect exciting though.

    Really? Protecting your loved ones from being murdered is not exciting? What is it then? How about seeing them murdered? Is that boring or exciting? Or maybe it just doesn’t matter.

    I find it exciting. I also found it exciting that by electing Hillary Clinton, it would be possible to hold into the Oval Office tactically and preventing the GOP congress (which you might remember in 2016 included the house) from filling a SCOTUS seat from the Federalist Society’s list, and from passing whatever fucking tax giveaway they could come up with to make sure the rich got richer and conservatives could always reply “We can’t afford it.” to any social spending, and from eliminating even the slight improvements to health coverage that the ACA provided (which somehow they haven’t done yet, but the next SCOTUS seat will probably do it).

    All we needed was someone to veto and stall. Bernie could have done it. Hillary could have done it. Neither of them could have done much else. Then work to retake congress.

    Would I have found it “exciting” during WWII to think… if we can just hold onto some fronts we can prepare ahead and launch the D-Day operation. No, no, that’s so boring. I mean, let’s have a fucking Children’s Crusade and hit the Nazis head on with random attacks they can take out one by one.

    I mean, I am sorry here, you leftists are fucking idiots who almost always lose and do nothing but yak yak yak. It is hard to care if I “agree” with a program that will never happen. I don’t care about your fucking vaporware.

    Now, occasionally, there are progressives that also get elected. I think Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is an incredible voice and hope for the future. I think Bernie Sanders is a marvelous senator for Vermont but elections are not about fun and they’re not about showing your friends how cool you are. They are extremely crude and often disillusioning means by which you hold onto just a little bit of power–or in the case of Republicans where you string some idiots along, rob them blind, and give the proceeds to your buddies.

    Anyone who was “too pure” to vote for Hillary Clinton in 2016 really did help Donald Trump (which is your right by the way; vote your conscience). If you expected Hillary Clinton to win because people like me were going to vote for her then hahahahahahahaha how’d that work out for you? And maybe among yourselves you discussed things other than what a nasty corrupt person that DWS is. I only know the part of it that I saw.

    It is true that during the primary there was a lot of positive campaigning for Bernie Sanders. However, between the convention and the election, all I saw was an operation to destroy Hillary Clinton that was carried out with greater enthusiasm than I had ever seen from a campaign to support a “milquetoast” Democrat (say John Kerry in 2004 who also would have been much better than four more years of Dubya, and of course I voted for Kerry because I’m not a fucking idiot.

  35. PaulBC says

    And… leftists… I don’t know. I have a friend of a friend on facebook who seems like an interesting enough, nice enough person. He was bragging that he has not voted for a major party candidate in a presidential election since before 1972. I didn’t say it, but I thought, well does that make you smart or stupid?

    I mean I agree that the “horserace” element of elections is pretty vile, but all the same if you never win an election, you don’t get to do anything except gripe.

  36. PaulBC says

    The question of when violence is acceptable is a tough one, but it seems that a lot of leftwing voters find it unacceptable to form an alliance with a candidate who might conceivably win an election if they have significant failings. That is denounced as “voting for the lesser of two evils.” So I have to admit it is kind of odd that someone so politically pure would not have to be pure in everything else as well.

    I think direct action such as a general strike is clearly acceptable though the disruption can cause pain. Intentional property damage is taking it another notch (but the Berrigan brothers were right to attack property consisting of nuclear arms). Harming other human beings is really taking it beyond “civil society”. John Brown’s raid was morally based, but it was an act of war and therefore not in the scope of civil society.

    On the scale of all these things, voting for Hillary Clinton or Joe Biden is far from a moral failing or civil society. It’s a political calculation. You are entitled to do it. Anyone who tries to shame me as “voting for the lesser of two evils” is going to get an earful.

  37. Elladan says

    PaulBC #38:

    I’m not sure I can say this any more clearly but…

    If you support leftist politics, Joe Biden is your political enemy. He will work against what you believe in, as he has done throughout his career. The degree to which he is your enemy may be overstated a bit by some like the person above, but it’s a reasonable assessment of him and the democratic leadership.

    Because he is running against a fucking Nazi sympathizer, yes, his party (along with elements of the military, the cia, oligarchs, etc.) is vaguely aligned with you against the enemies of humanity. He’s made it very clear that he will not support your policies, openly tells people who criticise him to vote for Trump, and has no interest in your vote.

    You suggested a strategy of stalling while building a political coalition. Ok. Who exactly do you think that coalition is with? Because it’s abundantly clear in 2020 just looking at the democratic leadership and organizations like the Lincoln Project that the party’s preferred partner is… George W. Bush’s Republican Party. You know, the enemy.

    Vote against Trump however you like, but don’t pretend that someone is your enemy just because they complain about the smell.

  38. hemidactylus says

    David Brock (not Brooks) had written quite a while back about the right-wing noise machine that had effectively targeted Hillary for decades. He should know as he was deep in the belly of the beast. Since then it has gotten much worse and dovetailed with the intelligence services of a foreign agent that had not too long ago been the root of all evil as the Evil Empire (Gipperspeak).

    Oddly that same dark conservative force, being in cahoots tacitly with the Russkies toward the shared goal of downing Biden, is using dated terms (not even remotely a dog whistle) like “ChiCom”. So let’s not concern ourselves with the poisoning and recovery of Vlad’s political opponent (not a safe vocation) but instead get the base riled up about the Chinese Peril. Old tropes die hard.

    Oddly enough I’ve been torturing myself via Jonah Goldberg’s long winded tu quoque pun Liberal Fascism where he introduces the useful concept of “status anxiety” which I instantly recognized as exactly the thing exploited by Trumpists in portraying Chinese (as a competing labor market) and Mexicans crossing the border as a threat. As a personal aside back before the Disaster of 2016 someone I know let rip at lunch the notion that if Mexican (or Latinx) immigration wasn’t nipped in the bud Republicans would never win again. Status anxiety. Must’ve been a Facebook meme.

    Oddly the GOP before Trump seemed to be, after the post mortem on Romney, trying to figure out how to woo Hispanic voters. Cubans and affluent Puerto Ricans may have already been on board, but as a vague ethnicity Latinx are hardly monolithically unidimensional. Demonizing Mexicans and Trump’s mishandling and bad optics of the Hurricane Maria disaster couldn’t have done much to woo.

    To more humane conservatives (and RINOs) Trump must be a bull in their delicate China shop (Me Too Nixon cried), but I guess there are enough knuckledragging bigoted Trumpenproles still extant (not downed six feet below yet by meth or opiates) that outright thuggery might still appeal. Plus the Confederacy since the South has risen and is alive and well in the Senate.

  39. PaulBC says


    If you support leftist politics, Joe Biden is your political enemy.

    I support not dropping people out of helicopters. Trump will start doing this (or equivalent) once his power is consolidated. Biden will not start dropping people out of helicopters.

    Yes, I find it exciting to vote for the candidate who will not drop me, my loved ones, or more likely journalists I respect out of helicopters or “disappear” them some other way. This is exciting. It’s a moral distinction. If you still think this is all about yak yak yak Biden is a “milquetoast centrist” then I don’t know how to reach you.

  40. PaulBC says

    To more humane conservatives (and RINOs) Trump must be a bull in their delicate China shop

    If you believe they ever existed. I don’t. The push to expand the GOP to non-whites in 2012 would have been smart strategically, if their base was not so committed to racism. But there was nothing humane about it.

  41. Rob Grigjanis says

    Elladan @41:

    don’t pretend that someone is your enemy just because they complain about the smell.

    There is no pretence. Most of us can smell Biden. The Vicar can’t seem to (or pretends not to) detect the far more sulphurous stench emanating from Trump. He’s the enemy because he wants Trump to win another term.

  42. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Elladan, what is your viable (electable like Biden, which any third party candidate is not) alternative to removing Trump. Show me the evidence of your conclusion…..or shut the fuck up.

  43. Marissa van Eck says

    I say violence is necessary, but it has to be done smartly. It has to be used surgically, like a scalpel, not a sledgehammer.

    And the target of the violence is paramount. Specifically, since this entire sociopathic blasphemous all-clown-cars Indy 500 is all about money, corruption, and the stock market…do economic damage.

    We’re basically dealing with Mammon-worshiping jihadists here; killing them or attacking them directly is what they want, because it makes martyrs out of them. Instead, do the notional opposite of a neutron bomb strike: kill the buildings (money, wealth, etc) and leave the people standing.

    I guarantee you these rich assholes would rather die than live like a normal person. This will make them pay attention far more than direct, personal violence would.

  44. hemidactylus says

    @44- PaulBC

    In my usage humane is a relative term. I would hope that similarly situated Low Energy Jeb would have somewhat different immigration policies and would not vilify Mexicans because…well…family.

    Jeb would be hated and opposed at this point by the Democrats but not for the same reasons as Trump. I do shudder to think what foreign intrigue we would be regretting in an administration populated by members of daddy’s (if not buried yet) and bro’s administrations. Cuba Libre?

    Not a great fan of MBNA Biden but I am definitely voting for him.

  45. Saad says

    Elladan, #26

    Vicar has no points. They have a strawman (that we would actually choose Biden if we could choose any candidate).

    You can criticize Biden all you want (and be correct about each of your criticisms). But it’s between Trump or Biden. Pick one. None of the above is not an option.

    Vicar says people shouldn’t vote for Biden, which is an asinine and indefensible point.

  46. hemidactylus says

    Not sure what Sam Jackson is currently up to as far as activism, but when I hear the IDW whinefest about the “woke” ideology all I can muster is the pragmatic call to arms of WAKE THE FUCK UP! To counter the Trumpenproles and alienated Leftists (on this thread) we need Sam in a Kangol droppin’ science in white (and maybe some black) Merkin living rooms:


    Needs an update but hell yeah. I can dig it!

  47. vucodlak says

    The post topic:
    “When is violence acceptable in a civil society?” a question asked with regard to the murder Breonna Taylor by the police, the lack of justice for her murder, and the protests in response.

    The thread of comments:
    Roughly 25 out of 50 (I may have missed a few, because I’m not going to read this shit that carefully) are about The Vicar’s latest drive-by repeat of the same damn thing they’ve been saying for the last, what, 5 years? That’s over half the thread (counting The Vicar’s original[sic] comment) about this bullshit.

    Why? Why do you do this? Are your lives so empty that you’ve got nothing better to than argue with the internet equivalent of a bumper sticker reading “Hillary ClintonJoe Biden for prison 2020?” Do you think you’re accomplishing something? Do you think The Vicar gives two squirts of piss about your oh so repetitive clever arguments? Bumper stickers don’t think, and all available evidence says that The Vicar don’t either.

    Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve snarled at The Vicar once or twice. I even partially agree with their one and only issue (the part that says Joe Biden and those like him suck), but I get sick them riding their hobby horse through every fucking thread, no matter how inappropriate. So I’ve occasionally fallen in the trap of talking to them like they’re a person, rather than a paper-thin kneejerk text-fart that’s one very small notch up from a set of truck nuts in terms of intelligent engagement.

    The Vicar is annoying. I get that. But, and here’s the thing: it’s not The Fucking Vicar who turns those threads into dreary, repetitive shitstorms. The Vicar oftentimes just drops by to fart in a thread once, and then moves on. They rarely respond unless they’re directly challenged, and sometimes not even then. If they do respond, it’s just the same old shit.

    It’s the people who insist on responding to them comment after comment, thread after thread, until it’s like a goddamned septic tank exploded up in here. I see a lot of the same people doing it, and I’m beginning to wonder if they’re anymore capable of learning than The Vicar.

    The Vicar does not care how well you construct your arguments, how logical you are, or what the realities of the situation are. If they notice you at all, it’s probably because they’re masturbating furiously to your outpouring of hate. Which, if you’re into that, fine, I’m not going to kink shame, but it’s fucking rude to do that in public.

    Let me offer a piece of advice:
    Treat The Vicar’s posts like a turd on the sidewalk, and none of y’all has got a hose. Just walk around them and get on with your miserable lives.

    And yes, I realize this comment is basically doing what I’m complaining about. Ain’t you clever.

  48. wzrd1 says

    That is in no way, shape or form anywhere near what happened.
    Breonna was nowhere near her bed, she was in a hallway with her boyfriend, who rightfully in that situation, had a shooty mcshootface in his hand, given the thundering on their apartment door.
    The door and/or frame of the door finally failed, folks in dark clothing entered saying nothing, well tried to enter, while carrying shooty mcshootfaces in their hands and boyfriend stood his ground and defended himself and his girlfriend from armed intruders.
    One intruder was hit with a life threatening femoral artery severing shot and they took careful aim and killed the only unarmed person inside of the apartment, with one officer outside randomingly firing through neighboring apartment walls.

    Try a no knock on me, where you’d never have a law enforcement reason to do so, the entire entry team would be toast. If they announced first, as they lied about doing, I’d demand that the warrant be slid under the door and one officer and backup officer enter while I read the warrant. Then, hand over my shooty mcshootface and peace would reign.
    With a, “You’re gonna put all of that shit back as it was when you’re done or I’ll bill you for my time and your department can’t afford my rates”.

    I’m the voice of reason or the veritable voice of chaos, depending upon how one initiates contact. Personally, I really, really, really love peace and quiet.
    I also pop up in the main LEO databases as REF.
    Retired, Extremely Flatulent. Which requires an entry team in BSL-4, full hazmat protection suits that are suitable for all environments. ;)

    They claim to have announced, but when both shouted who was at the door, got zero response. The officers then forced entry for no valid reason, given the occupants were already alerted and without identifying, attempted a hostile breach. At that point, any reasonable person would be in fear of his or her life.
    I don’t react well to threats at all. So, I’ll dominate the streets nearby or something.
    Hope that they like bowling balls!

    But, the truth of the story is far uglier than PZ did ever so gently filter it. Nobody was in bed and shot, they were in a hallway facing a thundered upon door, shouting as to who was trying to break the door down, with a very real fear of an ex-boyfriend and his drug activity partners.
    I’d pull my finger as soon as the door shattered inward.

  49. wzrd1 says

    Fucking balls! First, our youngest caught COVID-19 from the ward she worked on, which was ignoring protocols and was addressed.
    Now, our eldest, an RN, has it, due to reuse of deformed and useless masks. SPO2 was 90, at last verified measurement. She was admitted at her local hospital, said institution infamous within the community for incompetence.
    Now, to mend a fence that was broken long ago, when we “abandoned” her family, due to my career requirements.

  50. vucodlak says

    @ WMDKitty – Survivor, #53

    Sure, Vucodlak, it’s the victims’ fault for responding to an attack…

    “Victims?” What fucking victims? When The Vicar comes along and farts in the wind, the people fighting over who gets to huff it aren’t victims. They’re enablers.

    Jesus-tap-dancing-Christ. Breonna Taylor is a victim. Kenneth Walker is a victim. The Vicar and his hate-groupies are derailing assholes.

  51. Saad says


    The Vicar is annoying. I get that. But, and here’s the thing: it’s not The Fucking Vicar who turns those threads into dreary, repetitive shitstorms. The Vicar oftentimes just drops by to fart in a thread once, and then moves on. They rarely respond unless they’re directly challenged, and sometimes not even then. If they do respond, it’s just the same old shit.

    Good point. I used to just scroll past their garbage posts. I need to go back to that practice.

  52. gwelliott says

    To get back to the actual topic of the post:

    I think the actual issue now is to determine what sort of violence is effective. A straight up war is not a sensible strategy (and it’s the inevitable endpoint of mass shootings), so what can we do that will affect those we need it to, that is both impactful and effective?

    I think a general strike is a valid idea, along with targeted occupation of buildings. If I had the nouse, I’d reprogram the banking algorithms for people who have more than a certain value of cash and donate everything above a certain level to appropriate charities (Yes I stole that from Swordfish).

  53. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Actually, for what it is worth, I think The Vicar is a real person and not a bot. Bots usually have arguments that are better thought out. It is perfectly safe to ignore TV, as he has pushed himself to such an extreme that he will never convince anyone with his spew.

  54. PaulBC says

    vucodlak@52 I plead guilty. I would have left it at @18 if his acolyte hadn’t shown up. I think trolls need to be addressed, but it should probably be done in a more unified and concise way. I did have some thoughts on the original topic.

    While I find it compelling to think of the upcoming election as a simple choice of whether or not you want to see people dropping out of helicopters, I admit that’s speculative. I’ll make a specific prediction that I will stand by.

    If Trump is still in office after January 20, whether because he won the election, “won” the election, or just refused to leave, he will begin murdering journalists. That’s not all he’ll do, but it’s a pretty safe prediction. We know he wants to, and he’ll have the power to get away with it. A single issue voter who believes the president should not murder journalists has an extremely clear choice in November. Which is why “Vicar” seems to be posting from Mars. I don’t think he’s a bot or necessarily an intentional troll. I think he has missed four years of accumulated memos. How do you let this kind of thing pass?

  55. logicalcat says


    The vicar has no real points. Only strawmans, out right lies and dishonest lefter than thou bullshit. Hes also the guy who openly admits to supporting Donald Trump as a way to punish democrats. Because hes just an asshole lile that.

    Every single point the purity left has made has been resoundly debunked exhaustively by myself and others to the point and we dont care to do so again. Its exhausting. Its like talking to creationists. They just want to preach. They dont want to challenge their own views. Dont fall for the propaganda.


    Your right and this comment here is the last time I will ever mention the liar again. Ive had enough. If it were up to me he’d have been banned just for daring to pull this shit in this thread but its not my blog.

    I do think there is merit to correcting new comers like this ellagan person tho.