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No, seriously, I could swear the water in this pot is getting a little hotter…. (#2)

From the Arkansas Tactical Officers Association and the North Little Rock Police Department:

The ATOA would like to announce:

Warrior Mindset is a class being offered by the North Little Rock Police Department. Taught by Dr. Jason Winkle, It is an opportunity to train with one of the most sought after tactical trainers in the country. Class includes topics (but is not limited to topics) on fear management, decision making, emotional survival, physical fitness as they pertain to law enforcement officers.
Class is designed for all officers from patrol to investigations to SWAT. This class is limited to law enforcement and military only. Proper credentials are required. It will be a state certified course and officers will receive 8 hours of credit for the course. The class will be held at the North Little Rock Police/Fire Training Facility 2400 Willow St. NLR, AR 72114. Class will run from 0800-1600 and will be offered on three different dates: May 9th, August 8th, and October 24th, 2008. Contact Officer Steve Chamness at steven.chamness@nlrpolice.org or 771-7190 for details and registration. Slots for this class are limited.

Checks should be made payable to Dr. Jason Winkle ($150.00 per officer) and sent to the North Little Rock Police Department C/O Officer Steve Chamness
2400 Willow St.
NLR, AR 72114

JASON WINKLE, Ph.D. is President of the International Tactical Officers Training Association and the senior, contributing editor to SWAT Digest. ** Jason is currently a Professor at Indiana State University. **He was the former Director of Combatives for the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. Dr. Winkle has over twelve years experience working with and training members of the joint special operations community, **SWAT teams, and corrections special operation groups. ** Jason has over two decades of martial arts experience and holds black belt instructor rank in seven martial arts systems. His combat-readiness regimens have revolutionized the training approach utilized by numerous SWAT teams and military special operators. Dr. Winkle is recognized as a top international consultant in school, military, and law enforcement communities.
He has been published in the areas of tactical operations, combat readiness, warrior mindset, combat martial arts, fitness, and leadership.

The class is being offered for a discounted rate with assistance from the Arkansas Tactical Officer's Association.

— SWAT News & Events

Here’s more of Winkle’s workshop schedule, courtesy of his Martial Concepts [sic] website:

Dr. Winkle will be a keynote speaker as well as the MC for the XTREME CERT Special Operations Conference and Expo in Virginia from May 8-10. Dr. Winkle will be speaking on the Warrior Mindset for Corrections Officers as well as introducing his classified corrections CQB system to the US C-SOG operators.

May 15: Dr. Winkle will be presenting his Warrior Mindset workshop to the Indiana State University Police Department.

June 5: Dr. Winkle will be presenting Active Shooter Doctrine at the ITOTA’s conference on Active Shooter Doctrine In Academic Environments. The conference will be held from 0900-1500 at Indiana State University. Cost for the conference is $50. For more information contact Jason at jwinkle@itota.net.

Here’s what he was doing last fall:

Ending the week in Florida are two 4 hour classes taught by the President of the International Tactical Officers Training Association, Doctor Jason Winkle. Doc served as the Director of Combatives at West Point Academy and is currently an assistant professor at Indiana State. He is a contributing editor for SWAT Digest and published many times over in for his work in tactical operations, martial arts, fitness, and leadership. Doc will hold his Active Shooter class in the AM and finish the day with Warrior Mindset in High Risk Law Enforcement. Active Shooter is designed to prepare participants for the reality of violent encounters and their resolutions in high stress environments. Warrior Mindset deals in practical preparation and operation for, as well as, recovering from traumatic tactical engagement.

Here’s some of what he covers:


Louis Rapoli, a police sergeant in the School Safety Division of the New York Police Department, debriefed workshop attendees on the shooting at Virginia Tech, and explained each step that was taken by law enforcement and administrators.

A picture of Jack Bauer from the TV show 24 appeared on the screen behind him, and Rapoli said to the attendees, When an incident like this happens, there will be no Jack Bauer to come and save your school. You're the people who are either going to prevent this from happening or be first on the scene when it does happen. You need to be prepared. If not me, then who — that's what you need to be thinking about to get your schools ready for a terrorist attack.

Winkle calls this the Warrior Mindset.

These are situations of extreme stress, extreme fear, and extreme violence, and that shuts down most people. We need to be prepared, Winkle said.

The defining characteristic of a warrior — whether you're a police officer or a business owner — is your willingness to move toward danger, he said.

People are trying to run out of building, and you, as a school administrator, need to get on the PA system and call out codes for lockdown. You have to be a warrior at that moment, he said.

The role of law enforcement is to move toward something that everyone else is running away from, he said.

Charles Butler, Vincennes district officer and firearms instructor for the Indiana State Excise Police [! –R.G.], attended the workshop because excise officers might be called in by state police to assist in active shooter situations, he said.

**It was good to hear the warrior mindset emphasized, Butler said, and they gave good examples of training that law enforcement needs to have. An officer can never get enough training. It is the best tool a police officer can have.

Winkle recommended the following guidelines for law enforcement to be successful in active shooter situations:

  • Develop physical fitness and toughness through challenging, contact-driven training.
  • Become familiar (and comfortable) with the physiological changes that accompany high-stress and high-fear situations.
  • Become familiar with the nature of violence and be willing to use it when appropriate.
  • Engage in training that is as close as possible to the actual situation, involving fear and stress.
  • Internalize a code of conduct.
  • Know the nature of the enemy [sic] and active shooter doctrine.

Here’s Radley Balko on the Arkansas tactical officers’ class (read the whole thing):

I'm afraid this intermingling of domestic police and military is well beyond the point of no return.

Do you feel safer now?

See also:

Écrasez l’Wal-Mart

As a nice set piece to my May Day paean to wildcat unionism–that is, workers organizing themselves on the free market, without the suffocating patronage of the government, Ampersand passes along a nice reminder that modern corporate capitalists–the Behemoth from Bentonville chief among them–are not creatures of the free market; they are Frankenstein creations of government privilege for the bosses. Jonathan Tasini at TomPaine.com (2005-04-21) is mired in a host of confusions about free market economics, but he is precisely, and importantly, right to remind us that Truth is, Wal-Mart could not survive in a real free market. Remember that we are talking about a company that routinely robs the land that it needs for its gigantic stores by Mau-Mauing local governments into using eminent domain powers and handing out tax-funded subsidies. Remember that Wal-Mart’s business model for the past decade has been directly dependent on the repression of workers’ wages by the government of Communist China.

Putting aside the morality of forcing people to work in slave-like conditions, the so-called free market does not exist in China when it comes to wages. China artificially suppresses wages by anywhere from 47 to 85 percent below what they should be, according to the AFL-CIO’s complaint about China’s labor policies filed with the United States Trade Representative last year. With Wal-Mart as its willing customer, an authoritarian regime ruthlessly warps the market for wages by enforcing a system that controls where people can work and imprisons and tortures people who attempt to organize real unions or strike. Maybe the rock-bottom labor costs are really behind Wal-Mart’s slogan always low prices, but the company is certainly not an example of how to win in a free market economy.

It’s easy to see why Wal-Mart and its conservative defenders discard ideology: money. By ignoring free market principles, the left-wing Harvard Business School estimates that Wal-Mart reduces its procurement costs by 10-20 percent, primarily by taking advantage of the artificially suppressed labor market in China.

Back at home, Wal-Mart’s free market mantra stops at the water’s edge of the public till. By one estimate, Wal-Mart has pulled in $1.5 billion dollars in taxpayer funded subsidies (see www.walmartwatch.com). And that’s at the low end, because subsidies are sometimes hard to track based on the lack of public reporting requirements. Wal-Mart is happy to cash in on government largess like property tax abatements, infrastructure support, free land and just straight-out cold cash–all of which are the antithesis of free market ideology.

Free software advocates sometimes like to point out that there are a couple of meanings of the word free; there’s free as in free speech and free as in free lunch. The thing about Right-wing blowhards is that they routinely support pro-business giveaways, whether in the form of subsidies to Wal-Mart, endless coercive monopolies for pharmaceutical companies, or government-enforced union busting (see: right-to-work laws; see also: Taft-Hartley). When they start pontificating on the virtues of the free market they never mean it–unless by free market means a market that’s free as in free lunch, i.e. a government-guaranteed market for big consolidated businesses that they don’t have to work for or earn.

That’s the real reason to oppose Wal-Mart: not because they supposedly represent the worst of the free market (it isn’t a creature of the free market at all), and certainly not because of some cracked anti-consumerist claptrap. The problem with Wal-Mart is that they steal your money and use it to keep their business running whether you want to shop there or not. But it’s for precisely this reason that I think the best way to take the fight to Wal-Mart is not to dismiss the free market or to try to block Wal-Mart through local zoning controls. Wal-Mart is what it is today because it’s better at manipulating the State than you are, and there is no reason to think that that’s likely to change substantially as long as they remain what they are. (Trying to turn Leviathan against Behemoth has always been a sucker’s bet.) If Wal-Mart couldn’t survive in a free market, then the best way to fix what’s wrong with them is to make them compete on a free market–a real free market, not the corporatist sham market of today–a market where workers organize in freely-constituted unions that aren’t subject to the constraints of government colonization, where competitors can enter the market without having to buy off town and county governments and homeowners aren’t forced to sacrifice their own homes on the altar of Commerce. The system of state patronage is the problem; freedom, as usual, is the solution.

Dear Democrats

Rednecks. Hicks. Hillbillies. Dumb crackers. NASCAR Dads. Trailer trash. Joe Sixpack. Economically masochistic culture warrior fundies. Ignorant, beer-swilling, rib-eating, Bible-banging, truck-driving undereducated yokels. Poor white trash. Those people. You know the kind. The ones who are the matter with Kansas.

That’s why the Democrats lost, isn’t it? Because the True Blue are out of touch with working-class America, and because the yokels are too benighted to see that they are actually voting against their own economic interests. Right?

Wrong. Democrats, quit your whining. Quit your hand-wringing over why the working class doesn’t love you anymore. Quit saying things like:

I think the Democrats are not comfortable speaking the language that resonates with many middle-class and poorer voters: moral values, faith. That’s a message that is reassuring to many voters.

Quit blaming working-class America, and quit worrying about how to get poor people to stop electing Right-wing Republican war-mongers. Why? Because poor people don’t elect Republican war-mongers. Rich people do.

Annual Income % Bush Kerry
Under $15,000 8% 36% 63%
$15-$30,000 15% 42% 57%
$30-$50,000 22% 49% 50%
$50,000-$75,000 23% 56% 43%
$75-$100,000 14% 55% 45%
$100-$150,000 11% 57% 42%
$150,000-$200,000 4% 58% 42%
Above $200,000 3% 63% 35%

If the election were held only for people makng $50,000/year or less, John Kerry would have whipped George Bush 55%-45%. In fact, if it were held only for people making $100,000/year or less, John Kerry still would have beaten George Bush, 51%-49%.

No, that’s not just a regional dynamic. No, poor people still don’t elect Republicans in red states. Bush lost the South (49%-50%), the Midwest (44%-56%), and the West (47%-52%) among voters making $50,000/year or less. If only people making $50,000/year or less had voted, John Kerry would have picked up Mississippi, Georgia, North Carolina, Florida, Arkansas, and Virginia, and Louisiana and South Carolina would have been too close to call.

(Election data thanks to CNN Election 2004 Exit Polls.)

So, my dear Blue State Democrats, it wasn’t Joe Sixpack or the American working-class or Bubba down yonder who was responsible for the late unpleasantness. If you want to find someone to blame, don’t blame them, and don’t blame the Democrats for not knowing how to connect with them. If you’re a white dude living in a comfortable suburban neighborhood, blame your neighbors, your boss, and your dad. It’s educated professionals making over $50,000/year who went for Bush, and it was the folks making out with $100,000/year and more who put him over the top. This shouldn’t be surprising–being poor doesn’t mean you’re stupid; people tend to know where their bread is buttered and vote accordingly–yet somehow it has been lost amidst vituperation of the South, masochistic rhetoric about the urgent need for Democrats to slither further to the Right in order to reach middle America, and sadistic rhetoric about the grotesque vices of them there rednecks in Oklahoma and homophobic knuckle-draggers in Wyoming. Fancy that–it’s almost as if Democrats were falling victim to some kind of propaganda or ideology or something.

Here is my modest proposal. For myself, I’m fed up with this crap, so I’m not going to worry too much about it, but if Democrats want to put a roadblock in the way of Bushism then it might behoove them to worry about it some themselves. You just won, convincingly, the working-class vote. You got beat on turnout and disenfranchisement. People making $50,000 / year or less are about 75% of the voting-age population; but they were only 45% of those who were willing and able to vote on November 2. If you want to win, what you have to do is not to slither ever further Right, but rather to energize your base to turn out, and fight back against on-going Republican attempts to purge and suppress their votes. You can do that, not by turning into lite war-mongers, but by having the guts to call Bullshit! on this rich man’s war and poor man’s fight. You can do that, not by trashing feminism and gay liberation, or ignoring them as you just finished doing in 2004, but rather by framing them as part of a comprehensive, populist program, together with some serious talk about class in America. (No, this does not mean that I want Smiley John Edwards as the next candidate.) You can do this, not by capitulating to the Republican’s corporatist pork / warfare program, but by defying it. And you can do this by standing up to make sure that every vote is counted and that the victims of the Republican machine (those working class dudes you want to reach out to so much) actually have an opportunity to vote.

Don’t blame Bubba–but don’t try to pander to the caricature of him that the Republicans want you to buy, either. Try sitting down and having a talk with him over some ribs sometime. You might be surprised to find out how much you agree.

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