Friday, December 5, 2014

Sovereign Impunity: A Child of the Supreme People

Isn't Heaven so much fun!
Had any of the cops who recently killed unarmed Americans been prosecuted how would that go?

Had they gone to trial like the rest of us would have had to, their defense lawyers would have asserted an infamous judge-made "defense" called immunity (absolute or qualified).

That "defense" is actually an offense, based on an authoritarian imagination, an illicit notion, and is an attack on original American values (Follow The Immunity, 2, 3).

"Sovereign immunity" is a doctrine dreamed up by judges back in the day, back in the daze of history and herstory (history being the controlling one).

She could not take herstory to the ballot box, because "they" were not white males (Women's Suffrage).

Neither were black males (Symbolic Racism: A Look At The Science - 3).

Only white males could vote in America back in the daze, back in the land of the free and the home of the lynchers (Blind Willie McTell News, 2).

BTW, have you noticed the falling leaves?

A lot of leaves are falling off the trees in the middle of this winter, seemingly unaware that the more aware leaves did so a while back (Phases Of An Empire Freezing To Death, 2).

Prompting some to wonder what took them so long to fall:
My casual faith in America is the part of me -- thoroughly grounded in white privilege -- that has believed without overmuch reflection that our country values equality of all races at its core; that our laws and policing are color blind in their practice; that the efforts of politicians, business leaders and clergy are sincerely geared towards serving all the people; and that America is steadily progressing on the path towards a 'more perfect union,' to quote our president.

My 'faith' in America was based on things hoped for but as yet unseen (to borrow from Hebrews 11:1). But more importantly, it was based on things hoped for, but not worked for -- at least not very hard. Contrary to much that I intellectually knew to be true about the vicious, pernicious nature of racism, I held onto a lazy faith that racism in America would slowly erode itself through some kind of magical process of good will that required little of me aside from a friendly disposition and a hopeful spirit.

That faith, which was blind and useless, died when I watched the video of Eric Garner being choked to death at the hands of an officer who has now been let off without even a trial.

I thank God for my loss of faith.

Because one thing I know is that blind faith is dangerous -- by what it does and what it leaves undone. In this case, my blind, casual, easy 'faith' in America stood by while daily violence was done to my black sisters and brothers and I did essentially nothing to help. The image of Eric Garner's outstretched hand as he was being suffocated reaches out towards all of us bystanders with an unanswered plea for help, for mercy, for justice.
(The Day My Faith in America Died). Which reminds me of a line in a recent Dredd Blog post: "Thus, whether or not we can shake one trance, but not another trance, is going to depend on our own personal experiences, diligence, and abilities." (Choose Your Trances Carefully).

We would not just walk by a dying person on the street and do nothing, but neither should we ignore our nation when its health is in serious decline.

That goes double for those working in one of the three branches of government, who take an oath to preserve a healthy government.

Thus, the immunity plague seems to be infecting their minds to the point that a "the king can do no wrong" pathogenic meme has overtaken American government.

This certainly includes cops, who are instruments of the administrative branch of governments, and who are in a pathogenic trance induced in part by that certain American faith which can blind the mind:
... research reveals that authoritarian followers drive through life under the influence of impaired thinking a lot more than most people do, exhibiting sloppy reasoning, highly compartmentalized beliefs, double standards, hypocrisy, self-blindness, a profound ethnocentrism, and--to top it all off--a ferocious dogmatism that makes it unlikely anyone could ever change their minds with evidence or logic. These seven deadly shortfalls of authoritarian thinking eminently qualify them to follow a would-be dictator. As Hitler is reported to have said, “What good fortune for those in power that people do not think.” [The Authoritarians, page 81, PDF]
The Government presents an impressive array of theories which would preclude it from any liability ... we ... hold that the Government should escape unscathed ... It is often said that the doctrine of sovereign immunity is a derivative of the common law maxim "The King can do no wrong." But conceptually it is far older. Zeus himself carried an aegis or breastplate, a buckler, and a thunderbolt which made him, the mythological sovereign, immune from all that could beset him. And common law provided its sovereign with the immunity of Zeus ... The tide of history is running clearly against the concept of sovereign immunity. The disfavor into which the doctrine has fallen was observed as far back as ... 1939 ... [and] this Court pointed out that the assault upon the citadel of immunity continues presently apace. [De Bardeleben Marine v. U.S.]
During that legendary era when royal fictions were being conceived and cherished, it is said that a court favorite returning from afar brought home to his Queen a highly decorative undergarment for the royal legs. Details leaked to the peasants, and the incident became the object of much idle speculation and some embellishment. Suspecting that the Queen's carefully concealed legs had become the table topic of the realm, the court one day officially decreed: "The Queen has no legs". So was another royal fiction born. Thanks to what might loosely be called keen judicial notice, this one was never a part of the common law. Even in American legal circles it has been generally conceded that the anatomy of a female sovereign differs neither in form nor substance from the standard of a reasonable woman. But other fictions of the resourceful and imaginative European courts have proved hardier, and some, like "the King can do no wrong", survived transplanting to a completely foreign political climate to thrive as conspicuous anachronisms. The royal fiction of sovereign immunity has long been the despair of American legal writers. Legislatively, piecemeal attacks on it date from the mid-nineteenth century. But the doctrine has been jealously guarded in the courts, statutes purporting to waive immunity have been strictly construed, and the Supreme Court has repeatedly reaffirmed sovereign immunity in tort claims. Against this backdrop, pressures for a federal statute ameliorating the harsh immunity doctrines being pursued in federal courts mounted steadily in the early decades of the twentieth century. [Twilight Zone of Federal Tort, page one, emphasis added]
(Sovereign Immunity Source: Toxins of Power?). The falling leaves are out on the street expressing a new belief that winter has arrived (A Heart Grown Cold).

Now faithless, those people are out on the street expressing their rage at the notion that the king can do no wrong.

Now faithless, because the king can now murder in broad daylight while on camera but nevertheless be immune.

Sovereign impunity is outrageous (The Germ Theory - of Government, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9) !!

So, let the leaves fall where they may (Comparing a Group-Mind Trance to a Cultural Amygdala).

Dire Straits, "Once Upon A Time In The West":
Yes it's no use saying that you don't know nothing
It's still gonna get you if you don't do something
Sitting on a fence that's a dangerous course
Oh, you could even catch a bullet from the peace-keeping force
Even the hero gets a bullet in the chest
Oh yeah, once upon a time in the west


  1. Yeah and when they're arrested for [insert bogus, trumped up, new policy] charge doing what was once a RIGHT (now, privilege) guaranteed by the Constitution (that's been 'worked around') - their trials won't go like these and they'll be made to PAY.

    Cops better watch out or everyone that's armed may pay them all a visit at the same time in every community. yeah, right.

    How does a people Ghandi their way out of this? What would Jesus do?

    What would MS-13 do?


    1. "What would ... do?"

      Call John Wayne or Ghost Busters?

  2. Right, Randy - may as well (call for dead or fictional help), since there isn't going to be any change for the better going forward!


  3. Sovereign impunity or immunity is another way of saying "too big to jail."

  4. White Clive Bundy and his white gang had snipers with sophisticated high-powered weapons trained on federal law enforcement officers, on video, but were not charged or taken to a grand jury.

    Black man Garner was only alleged to have been selling loose cigarettes on the street, unarmed, and not dangerous.

    Who was the more dangerous?

    Are the policing authorities sending a message that you should be heavily armed and point your weapons at policing officials if you want to be unharmed and not charged?

    A dumb message wouldn't you agree?

  5. Randy, Dredd: yeah, i'm afraid they're goading people in general into violent confrontations now, since they have practical immunity via the "legal" system ("working around" justice should be their new motto). They pick mostly on minorities, immigrants, women, and young people, but won't stop at any chance to kill people (in order to protect them). What ever happened to arrest and trial? Now the cops are the judge, jury and executioner all rolled up in one (and instantaneous) - and it's being sanctioned by the Justice Department!

    If people with guns get pissed enough, we could see battles between police and citizens soon. You mentioned the Clive Bundy scene and there's no reason to think this can't catch on in the inner cities, given enough frustration. Another possibility is that these police LIVE there in the city, somewhere. They're NEIGHBORS of regular citizens - like blocks of them. What's to prevent mass, coordinated elimination at the individuals' homes? Or burning down their houses while they're "at work?" It would be no - contest: the citizens far outnumber the cops in any town (and the force is entirely made up of citizens of the towns) - so if they wanted to eliminate the rogue agents or the entire hive of criminality, it wouldn't take much to overwhelm their ability to defend themselves. I really think the "law and order" establishment is on the wrong track and making serious policy mistakes that could result in an uncontrollable backlash.

    "If people have nothing to lose, they lose it!" G. Celente