Your tax dollars at work

Phil Greenspun
has a post
about yet another example of your tax dollars at work harrassing
law-abiding citizens.

Maybe it’s always been dog-bites-man, and I’m just running into
it more often this summer. (See my posts about the
Gates arrest
and the
arrest of my next door neighbor.
)

There is definitely a generic problem with throwing money at
problems people think are important. When I was working in
scientific research, I got earthquake prediction money and
cancer research money for projects that were very loosely
related to earthquake prediction and cancer research. (In this
case, I’m not saying they were bad projects.)

So I think all this money people are giving the police because
they’re concerned about the public safety may need some more
thinking about. Having too many police with too little idea of
how to contribute to the public safety may well be making the
public less safe rather than more so.

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