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General Inge ducks private property issue

I am sure very few readers have the slightest doubt about the Samizdata Editorial opinion on forced removal of sovereign individuals from their property. It is without a doubt their right to use deadly force to defend their property. If there were a confrontation of homeowners and the State, it would not be the first time there has been a Southern showdown between residents and corrupt officials. Although I doubt it will happen in this case, a good dose of property rights enforcement by free men and women would certainly be a pleasant thing to see on the nightly telly in place of the victim of the day image.

Local government officials are claiming they are worried about disease and the danger of gas explosions in the flood and hurricane effected areas in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Poppycock. The population density there is hardly enough at this time to be cause for worries of any massive outbreak. Both are risks which individuals may choose to accept. It is not the place of the State to second guess the wisdom or foolishness of the individual citizen.

Now, finally, in my round about way I come to General Inge. In his recent press briefing he is ducking and weaving on the issue of committing violence upon peaceful American citizens:

GEN. INGE: I’ve been watching the news this morning and I understand that this is an issue. The situation as I know it now is that civil authorities in Louisiana and New Orleans are discussing this issue. It’s not clear to us what the exact state of the mission is. We would believe — we are told there are some 900 policemen in New Orleans. We would certainly see forcing evacuation as a first priority for them to work. If the authorities in the state of Louisiana chose to use their National Guard in a state status, that would certainly be permissible and their call.

When this turns into a law enforcement issue, which we perceive forced evacuation is, regular troops would not be used.

I sense relief in his words that his troops do not have to take part in this foolishness. I also sense he is politely sidestepping what he really wants to say about the local authorities.

Addendum: One of our commentariat supplied this reference. Read it. The State Is Not Your Friend.

25 comments to General Inge ducks private property issue

  • 50 Cents

    “the victim of the day image” – how wonderfully uncaring. Since you don’t care about humans drowning, why care about them being evicted?

    anyway, shouldn’t you be out burning Catholics out of their houses?

  • Dale Amon

    Yes, the victim of the day image. The media seems to have a deep desire to show us people as victim, (preferably a member of an official victim-class if they can get it) waiting for the all powerful state to come and rescue them… and when it does show individuals who are trying to take care of themselves and deal with the adversity they are treated as somewhat ‘eccentric’.

    I feel for those who have lost everything; I look down on those who sit on their hands and cry waiting for daddy-state to come make all better; I respect those who are going about the business of survival on their own. I would, in fact, help them first as they have proven they deserve a hand.

    Those defending and rebuilding what they have left are the ones we should set up as role models for the rest.

    As to the final remark… you are obviously not a long term reader or else you would know I hang out in Traditional Irish music circles.

  • Pete_London

    50 Cents

    If individuals have drowned because they exercised their free will and chose to remain in NO then that’s unfortunate, but they made their choice. Their is nothing insidious to it; they were in that time and place and had to choose. State agencies forcing people to leave their homes against their will, however, affects everyone and is deeply worrying. I saw an old man on last night’s news, standing on hiws porch with the toxic waters lapping near his feet. He says he’ll stay on his land, thank you very much. Well good luck to him. It’s his land and it is not the legitimate business of any government to decide if he stays on it or not. Does this really need explaining to you? Sheesh.

  • 50 cents, you are a rare kind of fool. If the person in question wants to take the risk, why are you so set against letting them make that choice?

    Moreover, I decided not to delete your comment so that your ignorance and stupidity is on display for all to see: Dale is well know for his Republican sympathies (that means “Catholic” to you) and those are the circles he moves in.

  • Euan Gray

    How is he ducking and weaving? AIUI, federal troops aren’t permitted to enforce the law in a state until certain legal steps have been taken. Since they have not yet been taken, the general is merely saying, in effect, “we recognise the law needs to be enforced, at this time federal troops aren’t allowed to do it, so they won’t.”

    It’s tempting to read too much into simple things, especially when this would reinforce your world view, but that doesn’t mean it’s correct.


  • Snide

    but that doesn’t mean it’s correct

    But it is your world view that makes you just assume that.

  • Dale Amon

    I read these reports every day and have done so for a number of years. There are nuances to the way the DOD people express themselves and dance around things which are outside their AOC which one comes to understand. I could be wrong, but that is my sense of the words he picked and the way he chose to say it. Until General Inge drops by Samidata to correct me, I’ll stand by it.

  • ian

    Dale Amon said:

    I respect those who are going about the business of survival on their own. I would, in fact, help them first as they have proven they deserve a hand.

    Very nice if you are allowed to do so – this link seems to suggest that the various authorities in NO had other ideas:

    A different experience

  • HJHJ

    Whatever your view of enforced evacuation, I think that Dale Amon is incorrect to talk about the right of individuals to use deadly force to protect their property in this context.

    The evacuation is not about their property or removal of it – it is about removing them from their property, which is somewhat different. If someone had committed a murder, would you defend their right to use deadly force against law enforcement officers who came to arrest them in their house on the basis of their right to defend their property? (I appreciate that this is a totally different situation and that in this case the people involved have committed no crime – but I am simply using this extreme example to illustrate that it’s not about defending property rights).

    I am, however with you that the state should not be going around forcing evacuation on individuals who are not doing anyone else any harm.

  • Dale Amon

    I’m sorry but I do not see why a sovereign individual who has initiated no force against anyone else, who is doing nothing but care for what is their’s, should bow to the Almighty State and allow themselves to be forceably removed from their property.

    If people do not defend their liberty with firearms, then why do we have a 2nd Amendment and why do we expend so much effort trying to protect it?

  • llamas

    I’m not unsympathetic to the viewpoint expressed – that property-owners should not be forcibly removed from their property by the state.

    However, you also have to consider the moral and ethical issues which surround the possible outcomes.

    Let’s say you go bang on some citizen’s porch roof, and you say ‘You comin’ in? Things are bad, and going to get a lot worse!’

    And he replies – politely enough – ‘Thank you, but I’m fine where I am.’

    I will take leave to presume that your position would be, ‘we tried, he turned us away, end of story’. What that also means is the state has no further responsibility to that individual. When it all goes bad – as it is very likely to do – the state has no obligation to go help him, find him, feed him, evacuate him – nothing.

    While the position is perfectly consistent, and I have no problem with it, you must understand that it presents a great dilemma, both ethical, political (especially in the racially-charged atmosphere that prevails in this particular case) and practically, in terms of the people doing the work. Would you really order rescuers – honourable men and women who are proud to risk their own lives to save others – not to rescue an individual who obviously, desperately needs rescuing because ‘he turned us down before, so he’s on his own.’

    It’s an excellent exmaple of the collision between a fine and meritorious principle and the dirty, harsh and imperfect realities of a real-world situation. If a building is on fire, and the fireman dash in at risk of life and limb, to save Granny screaming at the third-floor window, and she says ‘I’m not leaving without Tiddles!’ – would you argue that she should be allowed to resist, with deadly force, the firemen who attempt to pick her up and carry her out?

    I also think that the property-rights argument, alone, is not a very strong one. Noone is denying the property rights of a person who is forcibly evacuated – the property is still his, noone has taken it from him.



  • There is also the issue of who pays for the removal of your corpse if you guess wrong. Why should I have to pay for the removal of your corpse because of a decision you made? Perhaps, people who remain should be required to post a “body removal bond” so that everyone else won’t have to pay for their mistake.

  • Midwesterner

    Funny, Shannon. I’ve had a similar thought.

    Also, for anyone can remember, we’ve been through this particular discussion as a nation. Remember “Harry Truman(Link)?”

  • Dale Amon

    I do indeed remember Harry’s story and I greatly respected the old codger’s stand. He may also have acquired immortality of the T.Rex, P.Andrewsi style as he is no doubt currently fossilizing in the volcanic ash of Mt. St Helens.

  • Julian Taylor

    Shannon, presumably because it becomes an environment issue. If you die while out shopping you hope that an ambulance or coroners’ vehicle will take your body away, rather than leave it to rot on the sidewalk because there might not have been sufficient change in your pockets to warrant removal of your remains. As for anyone dying in their homes – I would guess that they would not have had access to their ‘free’ $2000 FEMA debit card – so couldn’t that money be used instead?

  • 50 Cents

    Perry de H.
    You are a rare fool. I objected to the unkind “victim of the day” for victims, not of the state, but of a hurricane (surely not their fault?). I offered no opinion about the forcible evacuation because I was waiting to read the opinions of such as Shannon & Verity before rushing to judgement. As for Mr Amon’s republicanism, I regret that I’m not a Sinn Feiner. Sorry.

  • HJHJ


    You missed the point about what I wrote. I was simply pointing out that their property was not being forcibly removed from them – they were being forcibly removed from their property. Therefore it is an issue of defence of liberty, not defence of property as you stated in your original article.

    I also think you’re somewhat extreme. I agree that the state should not have the right to forcibly remove people and nor should it do so unless their presence demonstrably interferes with the liberties of others. However, any response should be proportionate and being prepared to use firearms against as an automatic response against anyone who interferes, in your opinion, with your liberties is not reasonable. This is why the concept of what is reasonable is so important in law.

  • Dale Amon

    I’m hardly suggesting open warfare… but I am suggesting that one meet the persons requesting your departure by standing on your porch with loaded shotgun, not necessarily pointed at anyone, and state firmly “Mind Your Own Business. I Won’t”.

    The southern boys in the local National Guards would probably respect that and just move on.

  • MIdwesterner

    Uh, not quite.

    Did anyone watch ABC news this evening? The had a camera man along taping as soldiers broke into ‘rich people’s’ houses, arrested them, confiscated their weapons, and then generously let them stay in their homes. Unarmed. At least some of the poor people did not believe they were given that option.

    One homeowner was quoted saying “They were intimidated. Our weapons were bigger than theirs.”

  • Dale Amon

    I had not heard about that yet. So the local government has moved on to outright property theft then? Tsk, Tsk.

    I think we gain two items of useful information here:

    1) Why We Do Not Want Weapons Registration
    2) Why you need a secret compartment in your house.

    The State is really and truly not your friiend.

  • Midwesterner

    Dale, I saw these people sitting at the curb with their hands zip-tied behind them and wondered, “What’s wrong with this picture?”

    They claim that they are not “forcing” people to leave. I guess taking away their means of self defense is part of the “encouragement”.

    Also, I think the poor may be “encouraged” a little more strongly than the well off. It looks like if you can afford a lawyer or a campaign contribution, you may get better treatment. While still having you weapons confiscated, off course.

  • llamas

    Once again, we see the ‘one-size-fits-all’ bureaucratic mentality which is part of the heart of all the problems in NOLA.

    According to this mindset, an uninjured homeowner in a never-flooded home in the Garden District, well-stocked with food and water, is the exact and precise equivalent of a dehydrated and starved homeowner, sitting on the roof of his home in the 9th Ward surrounded by an endless ocean of foetid corruption, without food and water and yelling irrational imprecations at passing helicopters. Both must be disarmed and forcibly removed. No reasonable assessment of the relative risk in each case (whether to the individual or to society) may be made.

    This is where it goes bad. I can make allowances for actions, carried out in the heat of the moment over the last few days, which appear in the cold light of day to be excessive, oppressive and generally stupid. But – in some parts of NO, at least – it is now the cold light of day, and it is time that common sense was let back it.



  • Midwesterner

    I thank Ken Hagler for posting the link to the ABC news story. That was the story I saw.

    I have a couple of corrections to make. One, the homeowners I saw were not “zip-tied”, they were conventional handcuffs.

    I quoted the homeowner as saying “They were intimidated. Our weapons were bigger than theirs.”
    The correct quote is “They were a little bit threatened because our weapons were bigger than their weapons.”

    And, they were only “sometimes entering open houses with gun drawn.” I said they “broke into”. I’m not sure how they are defining open. They appear in the video to be entering possibly locked houses. How many people evacuated and left their houses unlocked? And I’m not sure how this relates to the 4th and 5th amendments.

    Other than these points I think it may even be worse than I posted. On my first watch, I didn’t follow that part about shooting people who “pop around a corner”, “you mean shoot an American?”, “Yeah.”

  • 50 Cents

    Mr Amon says to confront armed men and if they’re southerners they’ll just move on. Suppose they don’t?
    The Gumn has an awful lot of fire-power. They can demolish your house in minutes. Maybe the gun lobby has a death wish?

  • Maybe the gun lobby has a death wish?

    One guy with a gun is just a target if the government does not like them. 60 million people with guns is a movement.

    The ‘gun lobby’ (more accurately the ‘liberty lobby’) wants lots of people to own guns, that way the government does not have a monopoly of force.