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Ron Paul supporters beaten, arrested by police

A husband and wife from North Carolina, both public supporters of Ron Paul have, in front of the house they own, an American flag in good condition displayed. Upside down. With a photo of George Bush pinned to it and the words 'out now' written on the photo. The flag is in perfect condition and nothing is permanently attached to it.

The police in Asheville, North Carolina decided that this couple was 'desecrating' the flag and came up to their house. They told him they were not desecrating or disrespecting the flag, the respected it and this country, but we are in a time of distress in this nation. The deputy told them North Carolina prevents desecration of the flag and if they did not take it down, he would arrest them. So, they took it down, and went inside to put it away, closing their door.

The deputy then knocked on the door and demanded to be let in and they produce identification to him. They asked if he was arresting them for a crime. He said no, but they had to identify themselves. They pointed out that North Carolina does not have a law requiring them to identify themselves to police if they are not being arrested.

The officer then started screaming and kicking the door. The couple's neighbors by now were all outside watching this so there are several witnesses and they all describe the same thing.

The officer finally kicked through the door's window, and opened the door from the inside. He then stormed into their house and started beating the husband viciously, arrested him, and put him and his wife both in jail for:

- resisting arrest
- assaulting an officer
- desecration of the flag of the United States of America

http://www.citizen-times.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=200770725118
Permalink Practical Economist 
July 28th, 2007 1:14am
Story is proceeding rapidly: the PRESIDENT of the ACLU of North Carolina is personally representing them pro bono:

http://www.citizen-times.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=200770728001
Permalink Practical Economist 
July 28th, 2007 1:29am
The deputy was an idiot for trying to enforce the law in the manner in which he did.  But it looks like the case is going to end up being "he said, she said" unless there were witnesses to the whole thing.
Permalink Send private email xampl 
July 28th, 2007 7:30am
They deserve to be punished for desecrating the flag. I was also shocked to learn that amazon is selling US flags with the hippie peace symbol instead of stars. They should also be prosecuted.  I have personally filed a complaint with the FBI and the North Carolina state police, and I hope you will to.

People have died under that flag to protect our country. The flag should never be desecrated, and those who do so should be severely punished. 

As far as I am concerned, the only acceptable change to the flag is to add a gold cross, to reflect our country's christian heritage.  Perhaps one day that will become the official flag of our nation.
Permalink Just a proposal 
July 28th, 2007 9:40am
How is hanging the flag upside down "desecrating" it?
Permalink Trolls should be shot 
July 28th, 2007 9:49am
"People have died under that flag to protect our country."

My father served in three wars, and I missed the birth of my first child while serving in Desert Storm.

So I get to say - more power to them. Free speech is free speech, and if they choose to use the flag to express their view that the country's in distress, then that is their right.

And let me ask - who here does *not* think the country is in distress?
Permalink Send private email Philo 
July 28th, 2007 10:28am
I would say that attaching a picture of George Bush to anything is desecrating it.
Permalink Send private email Stephen Jones 
July 28th, 2007 10:39am
Yes, Just a proposal, people have died under that flag while protecting our Constitution, which includes the First Amendment.

The same Amendment that lets other people express themselves, and the same Amendment that means your gold cross won't ever be on that flag.

It's so sad that you are opposed to the very thing those people died to protect.
Permalink Aaron 
July 28th, 2007 10:41am
And the police seem to agree with me.
"Lt. Randy Sorrells of the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office said the Kuhns desecrated the flag by pinning signs to it, not by flying it upside down"
Should be fun if the court agrees. They desecrated the flag by pinning a picture of the President to it!
Permalink Send private email Stephen Jones 
July 28th, 2007 10:43am
"My father served in three wars, and I missed the birth of my first child while serving in Desert Storm.

So I get to say - ...."

it's not a privilege earned. it's a right.
Permalink bob 
July 28th, 2007 11:00am
So the Bush Administration is desecrating our Constitution.  When will they get arrested?
Permalink AMerrickanGirl 
July 28th, 2007 11:03am
People like Just a proposal tend to think it should be earned, and Philo was saying "as someone you damn well better agree has earned it, fuck you"...

Well, not to put words in his mouth, but that's how it looks to me.
Permalink Aaron 
July 28th, 2007 11:03am
+1 Aaron.

My only intent was to say "if you are going to invoke the spirit of the veterans who have fought and died to protect the flag and the Bill of Rights, then here I am, and I don't think we elected you our spokesperson."
Permalink Send private email Philo 
July 28th, 2007 11:27am
The whole premise of America is that it is a place where we should be free to use the flag as an instrument of free speech.  Any attempt to criminalize this is more of a desecration of what our country stands for than anything we could possibly do to the flag, which is, after all, merely a symbol.
Permalink AMerrickanGirl 
July 28th, 2007 11:33am
That said, Just a proposal is clearly a troll, and I, among others here, have fallen for his trollish nature.
Permalink Aaron 
July 28th, 2007 12:45pm
Just a Proposal is being ironic, and some of you are incredibly obtuse not to notice it.
Permalink Send private email Stephen Jones 
July 28th, 2007 12:45pm
Oh well sure - when you read the whole post that becomes apparent. But who does that any more?
Permalink Send private email Philo 
July 28th, 2007 12:50pm
Irony, sarcasm, trolling, right wing stupidity, they're all the same.
Permalink Aaron 
July 28th, 2007 12:53pm
+1 Stephen Jones. (first time for everything)
Permalink bob 
July 28th, 2007 2:22pm
Nationalism is so screwed up. Even die hard individualism is better.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 2:32pm
++ Stephen Jones.

Lack of irony is what the dufus cop had as well.
Permalink Just a proposal 
July 28th, 2007 3:16pm
I want to be an individualist, just like Colm.
Permalink Aaron 
July 28th, 2007 7:30pm
From his port, I don't think Colm is pro-individualism.
Permalink bob 
July 28th, 2007 8:03pm
*bangs head against the wall*
Permalink Aaron 
July 28th, 2007 8:09pm
>From his port, I don't think Colm is pro-individualism.

Communist, actually. Just not the regular kind.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 8:38pm
The regular kind seems to involve an massive, inefficient, bureaucratic and omnipresent state, whereas the whole idea behind the ideology was that there should be no state at all.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 8:40pm
Communism is one of those things where the original idea had merit, but its implementation was completely perverted, like every other movement where the power motive becomes predominant.
Permalink AMerrickanGirl 
July 28th, 2007 8:57pm
>>> Communism is one of those things where the original idea had merit,

I disagree with this.  I think Ayn Rand got a couple things right, including recognizing that it's not the practice of communism that's bad, it's the theory.

>>> but its implementation was completely perverted, like every other movement where the power motive becomes predominant.

I think that would be "every movement."  with a period after it.  No qualifier neeeded
Permalink Send private email Ward 
July 28th, 2007 9:42pm
i'll bite.

what's wrong with the theory behind communism?

what is the the theory behind communism?
Permalink bob 
July 28th, 2007 9:51pm
>I disagree with this.  I think Ayn Rand got a couple things
>right

That's where you went wrong. She didn't.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 9:58pm
"From each according to his ability, to each according to his need."

Doesn't work, can't work.  No time to elaborate now, off to the fireworks...
Permalink Send private email Ward 
July 28th, 2007 9:59pm
And she also wins the prize hands down for "creepiest sex scene ever", which is a thinly disguised literary expressions of her rape fantasies...
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 9:59pm
>Doesn't work, can't work.  No time to elaborate now, off to
>the fireworks...

See - that's basically the political ideology of most Americans (Canadians being a variant thereof). Essentially just "don't know. don't care. too busy. just vote for the one with the best suit, best catchphrases and shares my prejudices."
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 10:02pm
>>> best catchphrase

Like "Communist, actually. Just not the regular kind."  Yes, that was a much more detailed explanation than mine.
Permalink Send private email Ward 
July 28th, 2007 10:08pm
>what's wrong with the theory behind communism?

Mainly that there wasn't really any one "theory of communism", and the most accepted form of it is Marxism which is basically just a critique of capitalism followed by a list of goals, none of which have ever been achieved on a large scale (certainly not by the Sov. Union or Cuba). The path towards those goals has never been agreed upon by anybody.

>what is the the theory behind communism?

That capitalism is bad for people for reasons too numerous to list. Das Kapital explains most of them. Some things really are bad (he predicted consumerism), and others were more just problems with the nature of the time he lived in, rather than the nature of capitalism itself.

His "utopia" would have communal ownership over the means of production. So essentially that would mean that only workers have shares in their companies.

I think if Marx looked at the world today, he'd see the Soviet Union as an abortion of communism (or perhaps just the ideology used as a cynical grab for power), and the US and Europe as the closest thing to what he envisioned.

Personally, I see communism as a trend rather than a particular state. We should be (and sometimes are) moving towards a world where the means of production are owner by regular people rather than the rentier classes. We are moving towards a world where the economy is run along democratic, rather than autocratic lines.

However, sometimes that trend is reversed. You can spot the telltale signs in America, where the middle class is evaporating, shareholdings and landholdings are becoming the preserve of the rich and the poor are screwed on the one hand at work and on the other hand by their landlords.

The punchline to this is that everybody I've ever explained this theory to (including some die hard "communism is evil" types) generally think that what I'm saying is common sense.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 10:17pm
>Like "Communist, actually. Just not the regular kind."  Yes,
>that was a much more detailed explanation than mine.

Sorry I missed your response. I was too busy writing a longer and more thoughtful post than my previous one.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 10:23pm
Actually, the mere fact that it's possible, and even slightly reasonably affordable, for the average US citizen to buy stocks in companies puts us light years closer to communism than third world countries.
Permalink Aaron 
July 28th, 2007 11:07pm
Still. The vast majority of shareholdings are not owned by average US citizens, but the super rich kind, or huge pension funds (which get screwed on a regular basis). Average people CAN own shares, but it's generally not a good idea - you need lots of money to make the risk profile of share ownership sensible.

Besides, communism is more about owning a stake in where you worked. There is no obvious way to do this and still have an efficient economy.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 11:20pm
Yes, it's outside most people's risk tolerance, but the mere possibility of it...try doing that at all when you sleep on the streets of Calcutta.

And really, risk tolerance is mostly in people's heads.  Insurance is about pooling risk and extracting the profit from the difference between individual risk and group risk.  It's like gambling - individuals may turn a profit, in fact statistically it is basically guaranteed that a few will turn a large profit, but overall the house wins.
Permalink Aaron 
July 28th, 2007 11:32pm
Right, but even pooling doesn't protect you against stock market crashes.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
July 28th, 2007 11:38pm
Well, no, but nothing protects against that.  Even being crazy rich doesn't really help against a true crash.
Permalink Aaron 
July 28th, 2007 11:39pm
> ++ Stephen Jones.

> Lack of irony is what the dufus cop had as well.

The person who posted that was not me, but an impersonator.

Personally, I'd give the cop, and all his buddies a merit badge.

If it was up to me that is.
Permalink  
July 29th, 2007 5:37am
And the merit badge comment, was the real me, forgetting to sign!
Permalink Just a proposal 
July 29th, 2007 5:38am
Yeah, if you were a scout troop leader.
Permalink Aaron 
July 29th, 2007 12:53pm
> The person who posted that was not me, but an impersonator.

Stephen Jones?
Permalink Oppenheimer 
July 29th, 2007 4:39pm

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