Explorations in Policing, Faith and Life (With a hint of humor, product reviews, news and whatever catches my attention)

Thursday, April 14, 2011


I was originally going to post this on April 4th after reading about Chap-Hop in the WSJ.  But when I searched the internet to listen to a couple of examples of this new sub-genre of Hip Hop, I discovered hundreds of people blogged about it already.  So, I waited till now in the attempt to appear fresh and unique, which I am not.

I do have to say I really enjoyed the music I came across and discovered it is legitimate musical form way beyond the apparent novelty aspects it first seems to present.  It is a Steam-punk ethic of Hip-Hop.  I embedded my favorite four in this post.  A Victorian gentlemen hip-hopping about about relevant issues in his day.  If you could throw in a dose of Doctor Who into the mix I would never need another type of media to enjoy.

So put on your tweed, send the servants to bed and enjoy the night with a whiskey, neat, and Mr. B or Professor Elemental on the Victrola.


I have to say I really like the music...

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Mexican Drug Cartels-making insane decisions-Update


MATAMOROS, MEXICO-- Ten more bodies were found in a new mass grave in Mexico's northern state of Tamaulipas, bringing the total number to 126 bodies, officials said Wednesday.
They have terror, they have most of the government paralyzed, they are the second biggest employer next to the oil industry in Mexico...etc.  I still can not frame this within an economical model, geopolitical model or even within a terrorist framework.  Time will tell.

FYI:  Most gang members pose for a booking photo or news photo with their chin up so that the picture can not be used to identify them in a future criminal investigation.  

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Mexican Drug Cartels-making insane decisions.

Mexican authorities have found 59 bodies on a remote ranch in the La Joya farming village.  This occurred in the same area where they had found 72 bodies less than a year ago.

The news link from Yahoo

The story

At least 59 bodies found on Mexico ranch

NUEVO LAREDO, Mexico (AFP) – At least 59 bodies have been found on a ranch in Mexico's northern state of Tamaulipas, on the US border, authorities said Wednesday, warning that the grim toll could rise.

The Tamaulipas state prosecutor's office said 11 people had been arrested and another five kidnapping victims had been set free in the same operation on Wednesday.

Police and military staff learned March 25 that several buses had disappeared in the area, leading to their investigation which turned up a grisly find: eight mass graves in the La Joya farming village, in the town of San Fernando, the prosecutor's office said.

"With our work that is under way, we are trying to establish if the remains are those of the people who went missing on the buses," the prosecutor's statement said.

Authorities said they feared the number of dead would rise as the remains had only been counted in three of eight mass graves. A military patrol located the mass grave, the source added.

The gruesome find was in the same town of San Fernando where 72 migrants from El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Ecuador and Brazil were killed in August 2010 for refusing to work for drug traffickers.

Meanwhile thousands of outraged citizens took to the streets of 38 Mexican cities on Wednesday, venting anger over widespread violence linked to the country's illegal drug trade.

The protest marches were organized following the murder of a well-known author's son along with four close friends and two others on March 28.

Javier Sicilia, a poet and columnist for the daily La Jornada and the weekly Proceso -- two of the country's leading publications -- called for the protests following the killing of his son Juan Francisco, 24, near Cuernavaca, 90 kilometers (55 miles) south of Mexico City.

Seven major drug gangs are operating in Mexico whose bloody clashes have left over 34,600 people dead since December 2006, when President Felipe Calderon's government launched a military crackdown that has so far failed to stem the violence.

Authorities said Saturday that 20 people were killed in under 24 hours in Mexico's most violent city, Ciudad Juarez, which borders the US state of Texas.

Ciudad Juarez is considered the most violent city in Mexico, with more than 3,100 homicides in 2010. Most of the violence is blamed on drug cartels who fight for control of lucrative drug routes into the United States.

Just on Monday the United States boosted security at its consulate in Mexico's drug war-rocked northern city of Monterrey, where it built a second protective ring wall.

Two other US consulates on the Mexican side of the shared border were temporarily closed last year. Security concerns forced the office in Ciudad Juarez to close for several days, while another in Nuevo Laredo was closed after an explosive device attack.
__My thoughts______________________________________

One of the core principles in illicit drug investigations is to approach the enterprise as a business entity and not as a criminal conspiracy.  You either attack the supply line or the financial line.  It is simple logistics, they have to move product in through a distribution network to their retail outlets and take out their profits, after paying the bills, usually through a different network.  They have personnel and raw material costs, banking/financing costs etc.  You attack one side or the other and work your way back.  It is a logical though criminal system.  The violence that a criminal enterprise generates can even be viewed in two ways:  one as an internal ( but extremely draconian) self correcting/disciplinary function or a method to gain market dominance.

However these mass killings do not make any business sense and I am having trouble placing them into prospective.  I understand that violence can streamline and prevent governmental/law enforcement interference by keeping information under control and increasing local populations participation in the criminal enterprise and decreasing its participation with law enforcement.   Further it can create a political climate that is conducive to their criminal activities, but that is usually achieved through different levels and types of corruption (See Chicago, New Orleans).  But the caveat to the use of violence to achieve financial ends is that once a certain threshold is reached and maintained the citizenry will rise up and fight back (See Columbia 1990's).

The cartels control almost all aspects of local Mexican governmental bodies.  They have almost total "buy-in" from the peasant class.  The terror they generate from killing criminal participants within and without their cartels is almost total for the population and sapped the majority of the will to combat illicit drug sales and distribution.  These mass killing gain the cartels almost nothing, in fact it is starting to raise resistance.  They do not make sense from a money making prospective.  It even allows further enticement for the American's to demand  and President Calderon to allow, American military cross boarder sorties against the cartels.

So what is this?  I can think of only three possibilities.  1st, there is an enforcer for a cartel that really is a serial killer that found his/her ultimate dream job.  2nd, it is another voodoo drug cult like the one where they discovered (04-11-1989) had murdered the 12 American college students in the Mexican city of Matamoros or 3rd some of the cartels have become terrorist groups that have both broad political and and financial goals ( example: al qaeda selling heroin).

I am waiting and watching for the answer.

1 Kings 18:4
While Jezebel was killing off the LORD’s prophets, Obadiah had taken a hundred prophets and hidden them in two caves, fifty in each, and had supplied them with food and water.)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Risk, Death and the Job.

I was notified about Deputy Robert Britton death on duty through the nationwide law enforcement prayer chain that I am a part of because of my membership in FCPO. He was killed by a wounded cow.

The Link to the Story

The Story from the Star Telegram

TYLER, Texas — An East Texas deputy has died of head injuries suffered when he was attacked by an injured cow while he directed traffic around the half-ton animal.

Smith County Sheriff J.B. Smith says Deputy Robert Britton of Tyler died Monday at East Texas Medical Center in Tyler, where he'd been since the incident early Thursday near Bullard, 95 miles southeast of Dallas and 15 miles south of Tyler.

Smith had said the 54-year-old deputy had responded to a report of a stray cow struck by a vehicle and was directing traffic on Farm Road 344 when the cow charged him. He says Britton was knocked into the air and landed head-first on the pavement before the animal continued the attack until other deputies rescued Britton.

Smith says the cow was euthanized.
The probability of being killed/murdered on the job by the hand of another is very slim.  According to the Washington Post there were 160 officers killed in the line of duty in 2010 (all levels, local, state, federal), out of around 900,000 officers country wide.  The officers that I have known that have died on the job have been killed in traffic crashes, heart attacks, accidents or environmental hazards.  The real risk on this job is the environment in which we conduct our business.  This risk is not understood by the public we serve.

In this case Deputy Britton was responding to a traffic accident involving car verses cow.  I was talking to my friends about the incident at Baker's Square waiting for our kids to get out of Awana.  I was being asked, if the cow was wounded why he didn't shoot it, or why he didn't hear it coming or...whatever.  I had to tell them that the cow still has value if it can be properly butchered, if the cow is shot it can not be used for anything.  Britton was trying to keep the rancher from loosing out on the total value of his property.  Second, when you are out directing traffic, it is noisy and it takes all of your attention.  The motoring public does not pay attention and will hit you if you are not watching every direction at once, I have been brushed by side mirrors more times than I would like to remember.  Third, most people have no experience with large animals.  I have been around a few cattle when I lived in Waco, Texas and they are huge and they are fast (got chased out of a pasture once).  I have had a few deer who were struck by a car, suddenly bound up and run away. If they had connected with me what happened here could easily have happen to me.

There were two times where I remember cutting it close.  One was a fire department assist for a reported heart attack and another FD assist for a burning stove.  The heart attack had been caused because the family that lived in the house had set off about five roach bug bombs but didn't leave the house.  I was the first one on scene and walked right in and promptly got poisoned.  I was found bent over on the front lawn fighting for air.  I beat the FD to the stove fire and met the family standing in the hallway of the apartment while smoke was pouring out of their front door.  I was told that "Molly" was still in the apartment, so I ran in to save "Molly" and of course "Molly" was their cat (I think they didn't say please save Molly our pet cat because I would have looked at them with the "yeah right" look), which when I had made it to the back bedroom promptly ran out of the apartment saving itself.  And again, I was found bent over on the front lawn gasping for breath.

That's the real risk to this job and since its not sensational or dynamic or "Hollywood", the public just doesn't understand what's being risked for them.   Deputy Britton lost his life trying to protect a rancher's property, directing traffic for others safety and just doing his job.

Our prayers are for his family and the ones he left behind

1 Timothy 6:12
Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses


Sunday, April 3, 2011

Thoughts from the Wire

Just a couple of thoughts that I gathered spending hour after hour on phone intercepts for the last decade or so, at least it seems like a decade.

• No one uses their articles and prepositions’. Don’t think this is a generalization based on creed or ethnicity or home country or origin or religion or social position or education or income level. “You com’n here?” is universal. I wore out the backspace button on my keyboard taking out the “of” “a” “an” “the” “if” etc that I thought was in there when it was not.

• The use of “ing” at the end of a verb is a dying art. Clearly the “g” was late for work and the car pool left without him. “Comin’” “goin” “itchen” “swinn’”. I am going to put up posters on telephone poles to see if anyone has my lost “g” and will return him for an award.

• The proper contraction for “going to” is “gonna”.

• The word “what” has retired, it has been replaced on the job by “uh?”.

• Every drug boss ends up being better than almost all bosses I have ever had. Really, much, much, better in fact. I wonder if I promised to work for him would he stop doing that pesky, murder thing.

• Everyone calls their best friend and demeans someone else. Soon that someone else calls and when they realize who it is they pitch up their voice and say, “Hey dude, been thinking of you”.

• Everyone thinks they are getting ripped off. The other guy is always making more money, selling more product or tagging more women. Strangely that’s true for men and …women.

• Everyone but you is stupid.

• Everyone is an informant.

• Cops are fools, till they get lucky and catch you for the fifth time.

• A ten o’clock meeting for tomorrow in the drug store parking lot really means two weeks from last Wednesday on the night of a full moon in the MacDonald’s parking lot. It’s not code, yet somehow they all know, really, everyone one of them, they all know.

• If you meet a girl at a club for the first time and she lets you take her home that night don’t start dating her. Unless you want to find out that when she is not at your house she’s at your best friend’s house.

• The use of code words always breaks down because the members of the gang forget what the code means and have to explain that a “light bulb” is a pack of heroin..........................................every other phone call.

• That the local drug dealer with millions in the bank is still going to use his/her Link card to buy groceries.  They are owed it.

• Every cop out there is watching you...just...you.

• Every hype stutters.

·         You date you don’t ever, ever, ever marry.

·         The F-word is quite efficient.  It is a noun, verb, adjective and adverb.

·          Listening to other people swear is contagious.  I told my daughter in a nice conversational tone the other day to “practice you mother f@#$%^& piano”.

Proper way to decline a verb:


  • Present Perfect: I run, you run, she runs, we run, they run, I have run, you have run, she has run, we have run, they have run
  • Past Pluperfect: I ran, you ran, she ran, we ran, they ran, I had run, you had run, she had run, we had run, they had run
  • Future Future perfect: I will run, you will run, she will run, we will run, they will run, I will have run, you will have run, she will have run, we will have run, they will have run
  • Imperative Present run! let's run!
  • Present Perfect: I would run, you would run, she would run, we would run, they would run, I would have run, you would have run, she would have run, we would have run, they would have run

  • Present Perfect: I run, you run, she run, we run, they run, I have run, you have run, she have run, we have run, they have run
  • Past Pluperfect: I ran, you ran, she ran, we ran, they ran, I had run, you had run, she had run, we had run, they had run

  • Gerund Past: running, run

Phone Intercept Verb Declination


  • Present Perfect: I go, you go, she go, we go, they go, I have go, you have go, she has go, we have go, they have go
  • Past Pluperfect: I go, you go, she go, we go, they go, I had go, you had go, she had go, we had go, they had go
  • Future Future perfect: I will go, you will go, she will go, we will go, they will go, I will have go, you will have go, she will have go, we will have go, they will have go
  • Imperative Present go! let's go!


  • Present Perfect: I would go, you would go, she would go, we would go, they would go, I would have go, you would have go, she would have go, we would have go, they would have go


  • Present Perfect: I go, you go, she go, we go, they go, I have go, you have go, she have go, we have go, they have go
  • Past Pluperfect: I go, you go, she go, we go, they go, I had go, you had go, she had go, we had go, they had go

  • Gerund Past: gonn', go

and finally...

  • If you loose the target and your on surveillence its the phone rooms fault, unless your in the phone room then its surveillence fault.  Meeting to follow.

2 Samuel 10:3

the Ammonite commanders said to Hanun their lord, “Do you think David is honoring your father by sending envoys to you to express sympathy? Hasn’t David sent them to you only to explore the city and spy it out and overthrow it?”

Friday, April 1, 2011

Now we have a Sparkling Wine Dinner

I know that most people that enjoy my quirky blog that attempts to dwell at the intersection of law enforcement and faith while mainlining a full sense of humor are probably not wine lovers. But my wife and I have just started attending these once a month gourmet set menu dinners that emphasize course and wine pairings.

This time it was sparkling wine. Here is the list of the ones that we really enjoyed. You're safe from another blog entry like this for two months till we go to the beer/whisky dinner.

  • Vouvray Petillant, Loire, Brut NV Chenin Blanc

  • Billcart Salmon, Champagne, Brut Reserve NV

  • Graham Beck, Sparkling, South Africa, Brut Rose NV

  • 2009 Lini Labrusca Rosso Emilia

  • Gruet Demi Sec, Sparkling, New Mexico, NV

2 Samuel 16:2

The king asked Ziba, “Why have you brought these?” Ziba answered, “The donkeys are for the king’s household to ride on, the bread and fruit are for the men to eat, and the wine is to refresh those who become exhausted in the wilderness.”