Unmarked Cop Cars: Making The Roads Less Safe

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Wouldn’t it be easier if they just hit us all with another once-annually additional “fee” (that is, another tax) that would be due Jan. 1 and otherwise left us alone on the roads unless we actually caused an accident?ghost car

Instead of cops lurking in cutouts on the highway, radar guns at the ready, fleecing people at random – why not just cut ’em a check every year and end the dog-and-pony show that goes on countless of thousands of times every day by the side of the road – and later on, in a court?

It’d be so much easier for everyone.

Probably, more profitable, too.

But, no.

The dog-and-pony show must go on. The system must assuage its vestigial guilt over the literal highway robbery that occurs every day by telling itself – and hectoring us – that it’s all about “safety.”

Bullshit.

How do I know it’s bullshit? How can I prove it is?

Merely by pointing out that if the object of the exercise actually was “our safety,” then such a thing as unmarked cop cars would not exist. The fact that they do exist proves that what they’re after is money above all else.marked cop car

Especially “our safety.”

They want us to do something actionable – so that we can be issued a piece of payin’ paper. Think about it:

Marked cop cars have what effect on drivers?

Everyone slows down to within – and often, below – the posted limit. No matter how preposterous it happens to be. Well, if what they want is for us to “slow down” – for “safety” – then, mission accomplished.

Right?

Would it not increase “safety” to increase the number of marked patrol cars in circulation rather than cammo them up? Probably, the presence of a single marked cop car has more deterrent effect than three or four – or even half a dozen – unmarked cars. The marked car has a multiplying effect. Everyone within its orbit “slows down” (for “safety”) and not only that, cars outside the immediate orbit are also effectively compelled to “slow down” by dint of the fact that the cars within visual range of the marked cop have slowed down. Which slows everyone down.

It has what the “safety” crowd likes to call a calming effect on traffic.low IQ pig

Unmarked cars, on the other hand, cull individual victims from the herd – and have little deterrent effect on the herd. Everyone’s driving along – usually at well above the posted limit, because the posted limit is invariable set significantly below the 85th percentile speed (more about that here). The unmarked cop picks out one of them – because he can only deal with one “speeder” at a time – and pulls that car over. Meanwhile, all the other “speeders” continue to “speed” – which is so very, very “unsafe.”

Well, so we’re told.

But if so, the object ought to be slowing them down to “safe” speeds (reflexively defined as whatever the posted speed limit happens to be, subject to random change at any time by whim of the local bureaucrats). In which case the obvious solution is to deploy more marked cars, sufficient to saturate the roads.

This would end “speeding” – or greatly reduce it. Which would make “our roads” (as they always style them) oh-so-safe.

But it would be far less profitable – and there’s the rub.tailgating pig

“Speeding” is desirable – from the standpoint of revenue collection. If people did not speed, after all, there would be less revenue.

And so, “safety” be damned.

This explains why cop shops are deploying more rather than fewer unmarked cars – including (as in New Jersey; see here) what are styled “ghost cars” with markings that can hardly be seen unless the cop is literally right next to you (and soon, behind you) specifically to “catch dangerous drivers who behave in the presence of marked cars,” according to State Police Captain Stephen Jones.

Italics added.

But why not take steps to cause drivers to “behave” all the time rather than some of the time?

Because it’s about money – as much of it as they can mulct.

There are cities and whole counties that are massively dependent on the in-flow of cash generated by traffic fines (i.e., random road taxes). And not just the fines/taxes for “speeding.” Having an excuse to pull you over also gives the cop the excuse to “smell marijuana” and – under asset forfeiture laws – literally take your vehicle. Which is a nice little haul for the cop shop. Or whatever cash you have on your person – if it is “excessive” (not defined) and so considered not just prima facie evidence of but proof that you are a “drug” dealer.

Until you prove otherwise.   white cop car

Failing that, there are other options. Windows too tinted. An “obscured” license plate. Not buckled up for safety.

The list is long – and very profitable.

And would be much less so – if marked rather than unmarked cars predominated.

Well, why not just send everyone a bill once a year instead? They’d get their money – and we’d get some peace of mind. The roadbound kabuki opera would be done with. We could get where we’re going in peace – if at a cost.

Keep in mind we’re already paying – just pell mell and helter skelter rather than clean and neat.

We’re supposed to be a first (well, maybe a second) world country… not a third world banana republic. It is a characteristic of third (and not first and second) world countries that extortion is performed randomly, at the loosey goosy discretion of costumed cretins. First and second world countries fleece the populace in a more ordered, systematic and coherent manner.

So, how about it?

Send us a bill – and spare us the prattle about “safety.”

Please.

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90 COMMENTS

  1. It’s actually pretty simple why…if you’re driving and watching for marked cars, you only care and tense up when you see a marked car.

    BUT if you assume that ANY car you see is a cop, then you’re tense and care all the time, and the cops don’t even have to spend the money on having the extra cars.

    Basically they’re conditioning you like Palov’s dog to be fearful of any encounter with any vehicle, and to use that fear to train you even when they’re not around (because they never ARE around of course, but if they can get you to THINK they are…same basic effect)

    That’s why they beat the crap out of people all the time (aside form personal kicks of course). They want the population to FEAR them and to assume that ANY interaction can go horribly wrong, so they have a psychological power before you even speak. “officer friendly” is dead, now it’s “Officer soldier”, and they have a vastly different approach when dealing with people.

    So combine the 2…if everyone is fearful that the cops are out of control and can kill you at any moment with impunity, AND they can convince you that said cops are everywhere even if you don’t see them, than you have the 1984 situation with the population…everyone complying out of terror.

    Of course said compliance has everyone tense and paranoid (and usually armed), and so things go to shit very fast, but the cops get to play power games and rob people, so they’re happy with it.

    Like you said, it’s NOT about safety at all, it’s about power and fear conditioning.

  2. Last night I observed an unmarked car with a victim pulled over. Though I cannot know for sure, they were on the left shoulder, and the driver was unaccompanied, so I would bet the infraction was HOV violation.
    Tell me again what HOV lanes have to do w/saaaaaafety?

  3. exceeding ‘speed limits’ are anti -freedom and liberty ( as in ,they hurt no one or any property ) they are also ‘set’ by POLITICIANS……which imho says it’s all about power and control…real ‘safety’ would require NO POLITICIANS and their ‘enforcer’s…….

    • Nothing wrong with a little silliness 8.anyway after you have been on the inside for awhile,you can see how totally wacked,the system really is.It doesnt change the incorrigibles and the ignorant suffer the most because of the stupid complex laws.You would be amazed at the number of shall nots in VA,concerning consenting adults and the silly statutes are without number,the fuedal system never left,now there are just more lords and barons,it has been said that the economic shape is like a diamond now rather then a pyramid,but I will have to say its shape would truly be rather elongated,because of all the hidden wealth and asset some have(I still hold with the wide base pyramid myself around here.because after all,we are dealing with Applachia)
      Dues ex Machina!(when He comes back,boy is He going to be miffed!

  4. An argument can be made the other way.

    A community saturated with unmarked cars means you can never be sure if there is one about. Therefore you must always act safely.

    This would be safer than only slowing down when a marked car is visible.

    • act safely? Acting safely today as it does any time I venture on to I294 would have been “speeding”. I drove legally which meant I was road hazard and had to deal with unnecessary risks by obeying a grossly underposted speed limit.

    • Bryan – “A community saturated with unmarked cars”? What a gruesome thought. And how high would taxes have to be to pay for that?

    • Hi Bryan,

      Act fearfully, you mean.

      No offense meant. Just a clarification.

      I do not equate servile obedience with “acting safely.”

      Do you?

      • If you acting fearfully, you tend to MAKE an error(s). So your MORE likely to “break” the law if anything.

        To explain what I mean, I will use my six year old nephew as an example. When he is taking one of those useless timed common core tests, he panics and does poorly. He thinks he has no chance of finishing the test in the amount of time that is allowed. So he panics and never finishes the test, doing poorly.

        He gets so wrapped up in the part that should have no bearing on the test, that the test is even more useless then it was before. Who decided that a timed amount of time is even needed (or the test to begin with).

        The teacher knowing the school will lose money if he keeps blowing these tests, no longer tells him he only has a certain amount of time. He then does fine.

        But the point is, you shouldn’t have to look over your shoulder for that cop looking to entrap you.

      • “Safely” should have been in quotes.

        “Obedient” would be ore accurate.

        If the community is saturated with unmarked cars you will be more obedient out of fear of retribution.

  5. If they really and truly believed that speed kills and if there was actual proof that speed kills and is unsafe, then every car would be required by law to have a governor fitted. That they do not demonstrates two things. Firstly, they know speed is not the fundamental problem (as German autobahns demonstrate). Secondly, they are not so much interested in safety as coercive fraud.

    So who are the criminals here?

    • If speed killed then the astronauts would not come back alive. Race car drivers would not be alive after the second lap.

  6. The same argument ,that more money for the state and not the health, safety or freedom is the real concern of the politicians and bureaucrats can apply to other areas of our lives where it appears that the state is becoming less oppressive. For example, the decriminalization of marijuana in several states may keep people out jail and may have NORML folks giddy, but it’s legalization must be a tax bonanza for those respective states. The state is smarting up: instead of killing the cow why not milk it.

  7. Pure BS is correct. Safety concerns lol..

    I would feel much better if the cops just pulled up and put their gun in my face and demanded my wallet. Its robbery no matter how you act out the scene.

    and pure hypocrisy when Cops drive above the PSL just like the rest of us.

  8. Spell as thou wilt,Eight you have a dose of common sense on the order of 110%.I do not dicker over spelling(remember what happened to Dan Quayle?)I think the sorriest excuse for members of one club,to refuse to enforce the law on other club members,is called “professional courtesy” if you cant stand the heat ,get out of the kitchen.Such are the reasons King George got His minions expelled from this country.Perhaps we are too comfortable now to challenge the” status quo” when its outside our “comfort zone”(no new Iphones in the “joint”)the will of the community seems to mean little nowadays,when the Commonwealth attorney and His puppets takes a dislike to you(seems like the Judge isnt needed here in VA)

    • kevin, from what I have witnessed and what I have heard and read and been told by many lawyers, judges are rarely seen. The JustUs system is rigged as you well know to pile on so many charges as to intimidate. A prosecutor will then give you enough time to ruminate on those charges, maybe a few minutes if he can intimidate you to that point right then. They then offer you a somewhat reduced charge, removing most of them and watch you sigh in relief.

      Most charges not of simply arbitrary number vehicular code will also have a federal law that applies. If you intend to fight cause you’re right, get ready for the feds to take over and you’ll go willingly enough to state charges since, as in the words of a few federal attorney’s I consulted “The feds don’t lose”.

      If you’ll recall Martha Stewart was charged with one crime and consequently convicted of another with no more word of the original crime mentioned again. That’s a high-profile case but it happens hundreds or thousands of times every day to ordinary people. And even if you COULD beat those charges, you’ll probably have so many that you can’t afford representation and even more rarely is someone with the means to post a multimillion dollar bail since that’s one of the feds best “negotiating tactics”. I don’t recall hearing much about “court appointed lawyers” in federal cases.

      BTW, go to dictionary.com for the correct spelling of silliness.

  9. “because he can only deal with one “speeder”

    Here in Bellevue WA where I live, they’ve devised a way around that. The pig lasers people from his hiding spot (behind bushes [steps out for a second to laser] while (usually) his motorcycle is parked nearby), then he steps out INTO the street and waves 2-3 cars at a time over, which he then “processes” at his leisure.

    Ironically, however, unmarked cars are unconstitutional for traffic fines in WA state and an easy way to get a ticket thrown out by the judge. Most people do not know this.

  10. When I moved to Indiana, my new town’s department squad cars had no rooftop mars lights. They had back window emergency lights etc and were otherwise marked as police cars. But it made for making it hard to spot a police car behind you.

    It only stopped when there were many complaints about it. The safeeeeety angle actually got used against them for a change. People would not stop for traffic stops, because they thought they had a fake cop trying to pull them over. It caused other problems as well.

    They gave it up when some people were going to complain to the state (since a reg had been found requiring them) and a local business donated enough mars lights for all the cars. So they have had them now for close to twenty years now.

    However I noticed recently, they are trying to pull off this old trick again. There is a bunch of new Dodge Chargers that don’t have them again. Hmmmmmm.

    • The slimline lights on the roof and the inside the windows lights are part of the game of the highwaymen. Another part is the up-aim of their headlamps to hide the light bar in the resulting glare. Yes, intentionally blinding other drivers with glare to hide the light bar. With the new small ones and inside mounts being so popular the practice has become less common in my area but last night I was being followed by a driver who was speeding until he came up on me. Headlamps were aimed up. My reaction? Cop. Sure enough when I got to see the side of the car in a curve, marked SUV.

      Highwaymen hide, and that’s what we are dealing with.

  11. If, as you say, it is all about money, they’d make more if they could just prowl the streets with fore and aft cameras and no radar to trigger our radar detectors and let us know they are about. They could capture our errant driving with their cameras and use those video records to compel us to plead guilty or nolo contendere in court, or just pay the fine. I’d welcome such enforcement because it would take those I dodge daily off the street, eventually.
    I have not had a moving violation or been involved in an accident in over 40 years. If one wants to race, go to a race track. If you want to drive like a maniac, get a job as a stunt man, or go out in the middle of nowhere, where you won’t endanger anyone else with your sillyness.

    • Bill, stuntmen practice the same move over and over again to make sure it will be done as wanted and to make sure they can do it safely. To quote the coward occifers who beat people for no reason “we want to make sure we go home at the end of the day”.

      I’ve been looking my entire life for the “middle of nowhere”, a place I could drive any way I like and do so with impunity and the knowledge the only person I might injure would be myself. 65 years and I haven’t found it yet. Maybe I haven’t been silly enough. OTOH if you have a private road in the “middle of nowhere” please let me know, I’d like to lease/rent it or maybe simply buy it for my personal “silliness”.

      • It would appear I have a great deal to learn from “Bill”(pronounced Ahh, Beeall by Esteban Vihaio((Michael Parks)) ), the Mexican pimp in KB ll……and the Texas Ranger in KB l.

    • Bill,

      Two-thirds or more of the drivers on any given road are technically (as per the law) “speeding.” What does this suggest to you?

      Is it your position that speed limits are sacrosanct by dint of being speed limits? That they are, in other words, a moral law – like don’t steal or kill people? That to ever drive faster than any speed limit constitutes a moral affront?

      Or could it be that speed limits are just arbitrary velocity restrictions, typically set well below reasonable and prudent rates of travel (hence near-universal “speeding”) for the primary purpose of generating revenue by turning a majority of reasonable and prudent drivers into “speeders”?

      • If the state’s true motive was to protect us, it would post signs with RECOMMENDED safe speeds (the yellow ones) — not speed LIMIT signs subject to fines. While reckless drivers can certainly be a problem, I find it hard to understand how citizens can be punished for something that MIGHT cause harm. If people were simply held accountable for their actions there wouldn’t be much of a problem. Reckless driving (not mere driving errors) which causes serious injury should result in serious penalties, probably including prison time.

    • Bill, I can make several vehicle suggestions, times, and locations to end your 40 year streak. All you have to do is drive as you normally would.

      I294’s speed limit (55mph) is set such that the violation rate is 95% or so. I’ve been driving the PSL on local interstates (55mph) because of various new police tactics. This is most unsafe driving I’ve ever done. It’s legal though! At 120mph I might be as unsafe as I am at 55mph, and then only because there might be some move by an idiot I couldn’t react to in time. 85mph is much safer than 55mph but now carries the possibility of a life altering 6 months in jail.

  12. I had a marked car tailgating and weaving behind me for what seemed like a long time. I slowed down waiting for him to put on his lights, but he didn’t. So finally, I pulled out in the left lane and resumed normal speed. THEN he put on his lights and I pulled over.

    I think they drive that way to make drivers nervous, to make some mistake that works to their advantage; they look for signs of nervousness. I’ve trained myself to never admit speeding and say as little as possible. I’ve accepted that I’m going to get screwed, so I relax. By relaxing, it puts them at ease. IMO, this is the best one can make out of a bad position. In this case, the cop cost me a $50 fine and no points

    This has happened a few times. I’ve found that by relaxing and putting them at ease, it’s harder for them rip me off.

  13. Va trooper killed a husband and wife on Memorial day while he was chasing a speeder. From the looks of the skid marks and paint left on the highway he pushed their 65 Buick almost a hundred feet after he t-boned them. http://www.whsv.com/home/headlines/State-Trooper-Involved-in-Luray-Crash-304924801.html They were out here all day sitting behind bushes at the bottom hills just writing tickets all day long. So much for safety huh? I asked a local reporter if any charges were being brought against the officer. The state police told him there’s an ongoing investigation. Yeah the state police investigating the state police that’ll give us some interesting answers.
    Yeah lets at least be honest here and raise our taxes or send us a bill for traveling on the kings highway instead of killing us on the roads under some false pretense.

  14. This reminds me of related ticket scam: red light cameras in Chicago. It’s the usual narrative. Hidden cameras on traffic lights photograph the license plates of offenders running red lights. Tickets are mailed to the offenders and the city makes a lot of money. But after six months or so, the number of tickets issued falls. Why? Because motorists figure out where the cameras are and take measures to avoid them.

    To bring the ticket revenue back up to previous levels, Chicago’s city traffic engineers pulled a fast one: they shortened the duration of the yellow lights. If saaaaafety were the concern, you’d think it would be obvious to them that shortening the yellow light warning would cause MORE people to run red lights not LESS. But that’s the point. Chicago bureaucrats want people to run red lights. That way they can ticket them. And any rear-end collisions caused when motorists slam on their brakes to avoid running the red light? Tough titties for them.

    When Chicago motorists got wind of the scam, many of them demanded refunds for tickets issued after the yellow light durations were lowered. Unsurprisingly, the Rahm administration has refused.

    But the tickets are the least of this outrage. Motorists should also be demanding restitution from Chicago for any injuries caused by their actions. Injured motorists certainly would be justified in any tort action against the city of Chicago.

    And as for motorists that have been killed by this negligent action? Felony charges should be filed. But we all know how that would go. Bureaucrats always grant themselves immunity to criminal prosecution when their own rules lead to deaths. Negligence is a crime only when the peasants commit it, not the lords.

  15. Right on again Mr. Peters. Here in Alabama cops are proud of their high speed pursuit vehicles both marked and unmarked. Just like 18th century highway men they jump out of hiding to threaten,coerce, and rob at gun point. One city even suggested that they could increase revenue by merely issuing more citations. Hows that for honesty and justice. High speed chases are proven killers and the cops become so pumped on adrenaline that often they become brutal when the person finally stops. Often chases result in death by crash and sometimes involve innocent victims.
    In addition for “officer Safety” everyone is required to move over a lane and slow down. The clovers attention is on the cop not the road which creates a more unsafe condition. While the scavenger is devouring it’s victim the rest of the sheep are safe to drive on non molested but wary.
    Maryland on US Route 81 has always had a continuous speed trap at their border because the Limit drops from 70 to 55 and they are there to rake in the cash with signs posted of how much the fines will be! I have heard that Route US 95 is the “civil Forfeiture” king of of roads. Worse than Mexico!

  16. Today’s column is spot on. The logic is impeccable. Why else would the govt use unmarked vehicles for traffic enforcement if it wasn’t for tax collection?

    There is no logic at all to the current practice. I wonder how the LEOs justify that to legislatures? Probably just use political muscle, like school teachers, etc. So there is no rational reason, just $$. And they wonder why so many “normal citizens” distrust and hate cops. They are literally highway robbers.

    Unmarked vehicles may have uses for special surveillance or for patrolling specific roadways for a specific targeted suspect. But not to issue tickets. That should be flat out illegal. Period.

  17. And if you know what to look for, it’s pretty dang easy to spot “unmarked” cars.

    1. They’re almost always black, white, gray, silver, blue, and sometimes dark green, beige or dark red. I’ve never seen any yellow or bright red ones.

    2. They’re mid-sized to large American-made sedans and SUVs, like:
    Ford Taurus
    Ford Explorer
    Chevy Impala
    Chevy Caprice (the newest one doesn’t have a civilian version)
    Chevy Tahoe
    Dodge Charger
    Dodge Durango
    Jeep Grand Cherokee

    Sometimes departments use Ford Mustangs, Chevy Camaros and Dodge Challengers.

    3. They often have tinted windows.

    4. They come with one or more of the following:
    Spotlights
    Antennas (they range from the old “whip” style to stubby black cylinders; if you see 2 or more, it’s pretty likely that’s a cop car.)
    Marker lights in/on the grill, mirrors or other unusual places
    Visible equipment, from dash-mounted and package-shelf mounted lights, radar and VASCAR units, riot guns, etc.
    Cages/dividers in the back seat/bars or grilles on the rear windows

    5. They often have special license plates: For example, in Pennsylvania, state cops’ cars have license plates that start with “PA” and say “official use” and county and municipal cars have plates that start with “MG” and say “municipal.” FWIW, MG plates are found on snow plows and street sweepers too.

    6. They come with basic steel wheels with “dog dish” hubcaps.

    7. They don’t have any bumper stickers, dealer logos or license plate frames. Plain is the rule…but plain clean looking. You don’t see many dirty or dented unmarked cars.

    8. The driver looks like a cop: crew cut, Terminator shades, big and beefy…you get the picture.

  18. I saw a new one a couple of days ago I have never seen before. In our rural town of 40,000, there is a traffic light intersection on one of our main two lane roads. Close to downtown it intersects with another two lane road. Both roads have 45 mph speed limits. One of the four corners is a big mowed field. There was an old guy sitting in a lawn chair about 50 feet from the intersection with a pair of binoculars and a walkie-talkie. He was a civilian spotter. He sat there and watched cars either run red lights, or turn right on red, since the intersection had recently been upgraded to NO TURN ON RED, with the appropriate signage – even though every one of the four sides of this intersection can clearly see a great distance for any oncoming traffic. Anyway, this old man was sitting there “spotting”, and then radioing the cop cruiser parked out of the way nearby to make the stops. I don’t know if what they were doing is legal or not, since the old man was obviously not a cop — but they were writing tickets as fast as they could, one after another non-stop. My friend’s son received one of those tickets that day (they said he turned right on red – he said the light was NOT red). Interestingly, the part of the ticket that lists all of the various dollar amounts of the fine was left completely blank. My friend wants to fight it of course. Unfortunately his wife is an authority worshipper (clover) who tells him that they should just pay it. But how much to pay? As no amount is listed.

    • Hi Kitty,

      I may have some good news.

      If the cop who issued the tickets did not actually see the alleged violations he cannot (legally) testify as a witness against you. He is issuing tickets based on hearsay. Go to court. When it’s your turn to speak, ask the cop: Officer, did you witness me fail to come to a complete stop as described in the charge?

      If he says no, you’ve got him.

      At least, if the old bastard who acted as a spotter is not present – because you have a legal right to cross-examine (question) hostile witnesses who’ve alleged you have violated the law.

      Address the judge: Your honor, the charge is based on the testimony of a person not present in court for me to question or to affirm or deny the truth of the charge made against me. It is based on hearsay and I request a dismissal.

        • You bet, Kitty!

          Also: Check out motorists.org (National Motorists Association). They have a number of excellent ticket-fighting strategies.

  19. You have to admit,all these”Lahs” sure give a lot of folks a chance for a job with benefits(they wouldnt otherwise qualify for(oh,the humanity-think for a minute how much money is confiscated,from the hard working public,because of these stupid regs)ultimately,when a good hardworking citizen ends up in prison,who benefits?why its the legal pyramid(take a gander at who owns the prisons and infrastructure)if I could I would very seldom drive(let a pro worry about it and make a living too)-Kevin
    PS-Unmarked cars should be illegal,too much chance for abuse(I seen an old Toronada with a blue light pulling over a car on Rt 42,during the Rt 29 abduction,kidnapping days(so was it bona fida or not?)do away with unmarked cars,they are dangerous.

  20. Back when I lived in New Hampshire–a State whose tax structure destroyed any industry at all, and thus a state who’s townships are perennially on a tight budget–the People In Government Service (PIGS) would use unmarked cars all the time. One of their favorite tactics was to pick out a victim, then tailgate them. If the driver tried to speed up to shake the tailgater—Gotcha!.. I had a Meredith NH pig do that to me when I was riding a motorcycle one time. Now what kind of mindless mutt tailgates a motorcycle?? I pulled to the shoulder to let him pass; he didn’t. So, I blipped the throttle, and put a few dozen yards between us. Next thing I know, Christmas time! The little Christmas lights come on all over the pigmobile. I never came so close to assaulting a police officer in all my days.

    • Hi Paul,

      Yup.

      A state cop did that to my wife (since departed) about a year ago. Rode her ass for miles. She managed to maintain composure and did not “speed” to shake him… but told me it was a nerve-wracking experience.

      No doubt.

    • Hey Paul, Was this industry-destroying tax structure period of New Hampshire pre Free State Project? Is it still that way? It would seem odd that the largest number of FSP voters had selected such a state. I was among the people who were voting one of the 5 contending states when the FSP first began. I voted for a western state that lost.

  21. Just some random observations based on this article:

    * My county had a few of those “ghost cars” awhile back. White cars with markings so light gray they were nearly invisible in daylight. Supposedly the markings were reflective at night, but I cannot confirm or deny that.

    * In a nearby town a county mountie occasionally sits at a major intersection — with no one inside. Call it a “decoy car,” perhaps. It does the job, though — everyone slows down when seeing it. (The reason it isn’t a local cop car is because the town’s PD was disbanded in the late 1990s due to rampant corruption!)

    * Just as cops hide and use unmarked cars to avoid having people drive safely, they also become incensed when drivers flash their lights to warn oncoming traffic. It has taken some high-profile court cases to remind the donut-munchers that the 1st Amendment applies to them, too.

  22. CloverYour article is malicious and downright misleading. Cops do not need unmarked cars to catch speeders. Drivers on the parkway don’t care if a cop car is in sight. They still blatantly exceed the speed limit.Clover

    • People like wbee who are deathly afraid of speed should STAY OFF THE FREAKING EXPRESSWAYS! They are meant to get somewhere fast. You no likee, you stay on side roads!

  23. Ditto with hidden cop cars. The point is revenue and punishment, not deterrence. Long ago I read that the Japanese cops park in the open for just the purpose of traffic safety. They probably don’t have the ticket quotas, er, goals that American cops do.

    One of their favorite tactics around here is to park on the shoulder in the middle of the night on country roads, lights off. Real safe.

  24. Westchester county parkway police?

    I’m not sure how they even exist other than to collect money, and maybe make sure trucks don’t go on the Hutch or Saw Mill where they’d surely get stuck under a bridge. Seriously, implement height barriers at the road entrances and get rid of the parkway police.

  25. If cops were out and about for safety, then wouldn’t it be most logical for them to park at the most dangerous places? How many accidents occur on the parts of the highways way out in the country?

  26. But Eric, just having to cut a check for safety would be blatant racketeering, and even the state doesn’t have the stones to try to get away with that (yet). It would be getting too close to the insurance mafia’s turf.

  27. Hey Eric…I found myself slightly in the black this month after paying bills, so I kicked a $20 spot your way. I know it’s not much, but hopefully it helps out a little and maybe some other people will see this and help make up the rest.

    Keep on keeping on,

    Turd Burglestein

    • Not “The Onion”… Real Bullshit Life. I can’t open the effing links – my browser is too out of date! (IE9)
      Mind you, this is from a company which moves BILLIONS of dollars around EVERY DAY. An order of 1,000 shares of a company is trivial. We get bundles of 1,000 orders at a time….

      But I better account for every second I’m at work in their timesheet program, because they use that for budgeting (which – if they were honest – would tell them they need AT LEAST two more people on this team, and about double the headcount across the company – but all they’re hiring for is sales shmucks. And we can’t even get a modern browser. ) Anyway, /rant. 😛

      • “account for every second I’m at work in their timesheet program” as I cringe remembering (15min increments, unless you are working on something that takes longer) exactly what you are talking about. /rant understood.

  28. If it was really about safety, wouldn’t all the gunvermin owned cars, esp. police, both marked and ‘secret,’ be obeying the PSL? I am routinely passed by State Troopers while driving 5-10 mph above the PSL of 65.

    • That’s damn near obeying. I often see state troopers driving 90, 100, 120mph in 55mph zones. Rarely if ever do I see them doing less than 15 over.

      • I hear you, Brent. But the point remains – if it’s for saaaaaaafety then why does it not apply equally to them?

      • Why are they always in such a hurry? Do they get a bonus based on how many miles they cover during their shifts? Or are there just some donuts getting cold somewhere?

          • I fucking HATE computers…. I just lost more than half of the latest article I was working on – right here, in WP. This is the second time it’s happened. Fucking destroys my will to live. I’m done for the day.

            God damn it.

            • The solution is to never write anything long in a web interface text box. Many times I write in something else locally and cut and paste. Otherwise I try to copy and paste what I am writing in the text box into notepad or into a text file on my unix machine as a backup. I’ve also gotten into the habit with some web interfaces to copy whatever I wrote into the clipboard before pressing ‘send’/’post’/whatever.

              Web interfaces um well suck. What used to work perfectly fine on text only terminal based stuff in the pre-web days is now java laden fancy web browser interface works like crap stuff. Look at the comment threading here in wordpress. Threading works on usenet and newsreaders do a damn better job than any blog or forum software I’ve yet seen. There is one little used forum software I rarely see that is alright.

              • Yeah… I know!

                But every now and then, I trust the got-damned things…

                Got the article re-done.

                Now I need to go for a run or something…

                • Sounds like a combination of being pissed at the computer for screwing up, and being pissed at yourself for not expecting it to screw up.

                • eric, “something” has a nice ring to it. Or a run and something. A great big grin does wonders for the id.

            • Hey Eric, you think this is bad, bet you can’t wait until the programmers are driving your car for you.

              • JESUS FUCKING CHRIST, NO NO NO NO NO NONONONONONONONO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                You are talking about people who make ME look civilized…
                And a stone look smart and caring.

                So don’t give them any fucking ideas, please! Don’t even THINK the idea, it’ll transmit into the neuron they have….

                You are talking about people who figure if you put 9 women on a “baby,” they’ll have a human in 1 month.
                Think that a human with no arms, legs, or lungs is “code complete.”
                Don’t care that the system doesn’t work, so long as they met the deadline for “code complete” (and thus got their bonus.)

                The best of them are human and decent and intelligent, but somehow, I’ve only met ONE of those in 22+ years in the industry.
                Most were political animals, socializing costs, throwing shit “over the wall,” expecting testers to roll over and show their belly even when obvious defects existed. And they’d attack the testers, functional AND performance testers, for intimating their “baby” wasn’t perfect. Their ego made fighter jocks look humble and timid. And the quality of their work … I don’t have words. The worst thing you’ve flushed down the toilet would still be untouchably perfect…

                Cant’ get the URL, but google “Incompetence Demotivator”, it’s an image of nails hammered into a board… Badly.

                That’s their BEST QUALITY work.
                Don’t trust them to find sand in the Sahara.

                • I’m not giving them any ideas, they are already at least thinking about it if not yet working on it. See “Google car.”

                  • I know… And they ARE working on it.
                    Nonetheless – we don’t want to encourage them (and my rant would be seen as encouragement, I concede. After all, “dumb as a stump” is a complement to them…)

            • eric, probably no one remembers it but I posted an article here, a very relevant one in my view and seemed to get kudos but lots of criticism. I had the fucker all copied and inserted with correct paragraphs but when i posted it, it appeared I was on some strong stimulant, just a single sentence with a period every now and then. I tried it with another and there was a preview, same damned thing.

              I think I went out and tried to break my leg again. CJ was just watching. I could tell he was thinking “Been here, done this, don’t wanna again.”

            • eric, I forgot. The lyrics to Billy Joel’s “Ain’t No Crime” comes to mind. “Well, everybody gets that way sometimes”.

  29. Every slave-owning state had active, established patrols and, though they had many functions within the community, they had one basic job—to act as the first line of defense against a slave rebellion. They caught runaway slaves, enforced slave codes, discouraged any large gathering of blacks and generally perpetuated the atmosphere of fear that kept the slaves in line. Slave patrols which later became modern police departments, were both designed to control the behaviors of the populace in the exact same way.

    • Back in the 1850s, the state of Wisconsin exercised the right codified in the 10th Amendment by refusing to enforce the national Fugitive Slave Act.

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