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Will California ever be safe? The affluent look away while their cities burn

The police no longer control LA (Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

The police no longer control LA (Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)


December 13, 2021   5 mins

In my home state of California, smash-and-grab is fast becoming a way of life. Crime is a rampant, daily occurrence. Just this week, two of my close friends were robbed near San Francisco.

One owns a popular restaurant; the front door was destroyed, and the cash register robbed. The other was renting a car, the entire rear window of which was smashed to bits and the contents swiped. So common is this sort of looting and thievery that when he returned the rental car, he noticed that the car company’s lot was full of vehicles with broken windows.

Since November, throughout California, thousands of dollars have been stolen from stores including Apple, CVS, Louis Vuitton, and Burberry. In San Jose, over $40,000-worth of inventory was stolen from a Lululemon before the robbers escaped in getaway car. In Carmel-by-the-Sea last week, thieves wielding sledgehammers broke into a high-end jewellery store, smashing, grabbing and then fleeing. Right before Thanksgiving, 80 individuals rushed a Nordstrom in the Bay Area to participate in what authorities called “organised theft”.

Cannabis dispensaries are another favourite target. In Oakland, the Police Chief LeRonne L. Armstrong explained that most of these attacks turn violent: “more than 175 shots were fired” during cannabis robberies in Oakland last month alone. Even a physical therapy office in Beverly Hills was robbed this month by armed, masked burglars who entered the office and stole the doctor’s Rolex. The list of robberies is not limited to stores or businesses.

Many of the victims are ordinary individuals, walking down the street in broad daylight. As Jamie McBride, the head of the union representing LAPD officers, told tourists last week: “We can’t guarantee your safety. It is really, really out of control. I said it to people before. It’s like that movie Purge, but instead of 24 hours to commit your crime, these people have 365 days to commit whatever they want.”

Once upon a time, we would have been shocked by this level of crime. Today, citizens fatalistically adapt their behaviours. I know countless women who no longer walk alone after dark in California’s cities. Everyone knows to hide anything they leave in their cars. Those who can afford it are installing gates and building tall fences around their homes. The wealthy are hiring personal security and no longer relying on police for protection. I’ve seen this all before — in Nairobi as well as other places in Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and India.

Stores are boarding up their windows and closing earlier. They are hiring security staff and implementing new safety processes. A Safeway in San Francisco has installed gates that “let customers easily enter the store but swing quickly shut behind them, preventing would-be thieves from dashing out with shopping carts full of stolen items”. Rental car companies, like the one my friend used, are hiring glass repairmen to work full-time fixing the overwhelming number of broken windows.

As for those who cannot or will not adapt, they are faced with one option: to leave their city and often the state. High taxes are not the only reason so many big companies have pulled out of California over the past two years.

But how did we arrive at a point where people either have to adapt to the crime surrounding them or to flee; where the police union’s spokesperson has to warn the public that they are no longer in control?

The answer lies in an abundance of affluence. Affluence has allowed us to overcome many constraints in a way past generations could never have imagined. For long periods, a majority of people in the West have not had to worry about what tomorrow might bring. Questions over where future food, water and shelter will come from are no longer bother the majority of Americans. We’ve got apps on our phone that tell us what the weather will be not only tomorrow, but ten days hence; apps that allow us to buy meals, drinks, cars and even apartments with only a click or two; apps that even think for us.

But with that increased quality of life, we’ve become lazy. We’ve stopped paying attention. We’ve come to take for granted the institutions that hold up our affluent society. We have assumed that they would continue functioning without our personal involvement and investment. It seems that when a society is as wealthy as ours and as insulated from day-to-day threats, the vigilance to maintain its institutions wilts.

What makes this affluence particularly damaging is the fact that the rich are the furthest removed from the consequences of their negligence. In California, those with enormous wealth are often also the loudest advocates for leniency towards criminals. Those individuals, who have the least contact with crime, are frequently the most enthusiastic proponents of reforms that reduce the safety of the average American. Democratic donors give their money to candidates who support defunding the police. They campaign against stop-and-search, three strikes, and “broken window” policies. They argue for lighter sentences or even the decriminalisation of certain crimes — shoplifting, for example, has been all but legalised in San Francisco.

Wealthy liberals for some reason feel more compassion for those committing crimes than for their victims. They believe in a form of “progress” that ignores human nature and social reality. As Mary Harrington recently wrote: “Team Empathy… tends to skew wealthy: it’s easier to believe people are naturally good if you’ve led a sheltered life.”

Meanwhile, some of the politicians they support, such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, even deny problems such as smash-and-grab exist. Others urge the public not to be distracted by rising crime, but to follow the “arc of history” towards the utopia of social justice, diversity, equity, inclusion and anti-racism. Melina Andullah, founder of Black Lives Matter LA, recently said of those concerned about the rising tide of crime: “They’re trying to move us backward. We don’t want to move backward; we want to move forward.”

On December 1, Jacqueline Avant, the wife of Clarence Avant and mother-in-law of Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos, was shot and killed in her home in Beverly Hills. The suspect, Aariel Maynor, was attempting to rob her home when he shot her. He also attempted to kill her security guard.

On hearing the news, Abdullah’s response was to condemn it as “appalling”, yet also called on officials not to use it as an excuse to introduce tougher measures on crime. Elsewhere, Oprah Winfrey mourned the loss of her friend with a social media post that ended with the comment: “The world is upside down. And deeply in need of some love today.”

Love, as Oprah imagines it, is an ideal. Who knows? Perhaps, one day, we will achieve universal love. But, in the absence of any meaningful proposals, to hold it up as the solution to criminal activity is pure decadence.

Far more important is the need to keep in place the infrastructure of policing, investigating, trying and punishing that has evolved in the Western world — a system that seeks to strike a judicious balance between the safety of society and the rights of any accused individual. Tweak that system by all means. No one claims it is perfect, and much has been achieved in recent years by the movement for criminal justice reform.

But don’t delude yourself with talk of “love” or proposals to defund the police. For the perpetrators, the best kind of love is tough love. For the victims, whether they’re affluent or not, the best kind of love is being protected. We don’t need “social justice”, just plain justice.


Ayaan Hirsi Ali is an UnHerd columnist. She is also the Founder of the AHA Foundation, and host of The Ayaan Hirsi Ali Podcast. Her Substack is called Restoration.

Ayaan

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Matt Hindman
Matt Hindman
2 years ago

I would have more sympathy if Californians would quit bringing their problems with them. My state of Colorado has been seriously damaged by Californians fleeing their home state and yet still trying to implement the same things here. While crime is fortunately still low in my surrounding area, politicians in Denver tried to force massive changes to policing throughout the state. Seriously, in Denver they actually removed school resource officers in public schools! Make the kids safer by making sure there are no police nearby! They also succeeded in eliminating qualified immunity for police statewide. Now qualified immunity has had some serious problems and was often abused. Instead of reasonably reforming it, the Leftist idiots decided to get rid of it all together. Now, instead of attracting qualified people to the profession who want to have a decent career in law enforcement, we are attracting people who take the job because they cannot find anything else and pay is worse than ever. Hint, this will not improve things with policing. I get it Californians, you don’t want your problems. Guess what? We don’t want your problems either.

Last edited 2 years ago by Matt Hindman
George Glashan
George Glashan
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Hindman

would it be possible to build a wall around California?
I assume some of them are good people but they aren’t sending their best to Denver.

Last edited 2 years ago by George Glashan
Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  George Glashan

“but they aren’t sending their best to Denver.”

Well they are not sending their worse – try watching a documentary on the California Prison System. But those will come out some time later – when times get hard a diaspora of the worst will join the ‘not best’ you complain of….I think California will not be good for the country going forward.

There is something about that place… I have been over all of it, top to bottom, and it has something off… Look at its main exports, ‘Entertainment’ and Social Media, and Tech. And those definitely are some of the most degenerate influences on the world ever created. The rest of its social Malaise we all know of – it seems to radiate from the State.

JAX AGNESSON
JAX AGNESSON
2 years ago
Reply to  George Glashan

What is the chance, seriously, of the US fracturing into three or four separate countries? I have wondered about this for quite some years now; but being a Brit I don’t know enough about it, and would welcome some informed estimates.

David McDowell
David McDowell
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Hindman

Interesting. The same thing’s happening in the UK. People who voted Green and ruined Brighton now fleeing the mess they created to Lewes and doing the same thing there. They act like terrorists who move from prison cell to prison cell, smearing each one with their own excrement.

Last edited 2 years ago by David McDowell
Benjamin Jones
Benjamin Jones
2 years ago
Reply to  David McDowell

Maybe those Brightonians will get the full Lewes treatment on November 5th!

George Glashan
George Glashan
2 years ago
Reply to  Benjamin Jones

Are the woke naturally flammable or do you need to apply an accelerant? Or can you just bask in the glow and heat from their self-righteous smugness?

Last edited 2 years ago by George Glashan
Aidan Trimble
Aidan Trimble
2 years ago
Reply to  George Glashan

Most of them are too damp to burn.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago
Reply to  George Glashan

We can always hope for here and there cases of inexplicable spontaneous immolation.

Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
2 years ago
Reply to  David McDowell

Local government has very limited powers in the UK, and does not control the police, so whatever the faults of the Green Party administration in Brighton, the California case is on an entirely different level.

Last edited 2 years ago by Andrew Fisher
RJ Kent
RJ Kent
2 years ago
Reply to  David McDowell

Visiting Brighton recently, I see what you mean! Similar to Glasgow, presumably for similar political reasons…..

Drahcir Nevarc
Drahcir Nevarc
2 years ago
Reply to  David McDowell

Or a metastasising cancer.

Samuel Gee
Samuel Gee
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Hindman

Agree except for qualified immunity. It’s unconstitutional in spirit anyway. The Founding Fathers were precisely trying to circumvent the power of law enforcement by providing citizens with inalienable rights. Inalienable as in, not letting law enforcement officers abrogate them and get away with it. If you violate someone’s rights as a matter of urgency or good sense then justify that in court.
Qualified immunity is not good for law enforcement. It’s only good for bad cops.

If good policing can’t be done while upholding the rights of citizens under the constitution then you need a different constitution.

However, I think upholding citizens rights under The constitution is the very definition of good policing.

Sean Penley
Sean Penley
2 years ago
Reply to  Samuel Gee

It isn’t even that old of a concept either. Effective policing existed before it. But it’s actually with prosecutors where it causes the biggest problems.

George Glashan
George Glashan
2 years ago

but Biden’s administration said the problems in America are caused by White supremacy and also now terrorist Parents groups, obviously these two sinister movements must be taking shadow instructions from the bad orangeman and have combined forces to make Democrat states and cities look bad by…. voting in Democrat’s and letting them enact Democratic Party policy.

Last edited 2 years ago by George Glashan
Aldo Maccione
Aldo Maccione
2 years ago
Reply to  George Glashan

Dastardly plan…

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago
Reply to  Aldo Maccione

I used “dastardly” with a little smirk in a conversation with my pastor not long ago. I was delighted by his outburst: “I LOVE that word!” I had smirked not because I scorn moral categories, but because I recognize the de facto obsolescence of the word.

It’s a word we need to pull back from the void. The Devil is a damned fine wordsmith. He recognizes that alteration in the meaning of some words, and the disappearing of others, are among his most useful tools. I suspect he hasn’t yet lost his giddiness over his success with one of our loveliest words, “gay.”

Aldo Maccione
Aldo Maccione
2 years ago
Reply to  Bob Taylor

hear hear

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
2 years ago
Reply to  George Glashan

The Demon-crats are on to them though, and so double down on their woke insanity to let the public know the policies are truly theirs.

John Riordan
John Riordan
2 years ago

Brilliant and yet terrifying article. I don’t know what’s worse, the fact of the crime wave, the public statement from the police that they are no longer able to protect the public, or the attitude of the political class that seems to expect law abiding citizens to accept that the breakdown of law and order is a price worth paying to achieve social justice.

At least in this case, it proves that social justice is not an extension of the existing justice system, but something that is diametrically opposed to it: you can have one or other but not both. As for Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez expecting to get away with claiming there isn’t a crime problem at all, well that’s just typical of the dementedly thick-headed attitude that characterises her entire existence.

Last edited 2 years ago by John Riordan
Emre Emre
Emre Emre
2 years ago
Reply to  John Riordan

Seen cynically, this comes down to a Faustian bargain the wealthy did with the Marxists. Marxists focus on cultural issues (as opposed to wealth inequality) and the elite let them to wield power in a kind of uneasy win-win arrangement. Going forward, I suspect this will end up destroying many more elements of liberal democracy to the extent it’ll be hard to recognise what it is.

Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
2 years ago
Reply to  Emre Emre

I know some people like using the term ‘Marxist’ a bit like the Left use ‘Fascist’ but modern Identitarian Left ‘social justice’ politics has very little in common with Marxism, including a complete indifference to economic issues.

Emre Emre
Emre Emre
2 years ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

Interestingly, a good deal of the identitarian (cultural) left does go back to Marx at its roots. There’s a tradition of Western Marxism that focused on writings of a young Marx who was exploring a broader range of concerns including these concepts of identity before turning mainly to historical materialism later. This apparently happened in particular in the West as a reaction for those Marxists who were terrified at what they saw during and after the Bolshevik Revolution.
Having said this, I agree with you it’s probably unnecessarily confusing to use Marxist in both contexts,and “leftists” would’ve probably served the purpose better. I’ve done it here with the view that those who apply Marxian analyses (and concepts of morality) at issues are primarily Marxists whether of the identitarian or economic type.

John Riordan
John Riordan
2 years ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

That is true, but you do therefore have to explain why the term “cultural marxism” exists. It isn’t merely a label wrongly applied to parts of the modern Left, because the agenda it possesses is much the same as that of the 20th century Marxists. What’s really happening is that because times and economic circumstances have changed, an agenda that has always hungered for absolute power has merely changed its tactics while leaving its objective in place, that’s all.

Drahcir Nevarc
Drahcir Nevarc
2 years ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

I’m fairly right wing and routinely use ‘Fascist’ to describe the woke left.

Last edited 2 years ago by Drahcir Nevarc
Douglas Proudfoot
Douglas Proudfoot
2 years ago
Reply to  John Riordan

AOC expects to get away with her statement because her Party controls the vast majority of news and social media. Just because the censors are employed by private companies, it doesn’t make them any less intrusive. It actually makes the censors more effective.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago
Reply to  John Riordan

You must temper your disappointment with the recognition that if her voice changes, it will be a sign that she’s entered puberty, at least.

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
2 years ago
Reply to  John Riordan

Sadly, AOC is just one of a multitude of ‘progressives’ who deny reality in the pursuit of their agenda:. Senior House member Jerry Nadler denied the existence of Antifa, dismissing the concept as a right-wing ‘myth.’. And CNN infamously referred to social justice arson and violence across America in the summer if 2020 as ” mostly peaceful.’ The list goes on and on.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago

Nice missing of the point of it all… “where the police union’s spokesperson has to warn the public that they are no longer in control?The answer lies in an abundance of affluence.”

No, the breakdown in law and order is totally planned. It is an Agenda – Soros, the world’s most evil man, has spent decades and a Billion getting Neo-Marxist DAs and Judges, School leaders, University heads, and so on, into positions to help destroy USA, and the West, from the inside. That is just Soros – and he is one of Many super wealthy Elites out to destroy the ‘Classic Liberal’, Judeo-Christian, West, and it is working amazingly well. (what we call Liberal now days is merely degenerate Postmodern Left, and is nothing like Classical-Liberals, who were the kind who wrote the Constitution of the USA).

The great engine of decency is the Middle Class and successful Working Class. Well off enough to vote for the betterment of society and their nations rather than being clients of the State. Moral enough to wish for all to do well and so keep and maintain freedom, Rule of Law and opportunity. Naturally this means they must be destroyed for the Elite to divide and conquer the world in a Neo-Fudalist Globalism.

Breakdown in law and order, Rule of Law, is one of the most effective things to divide society into groups who fear and loath others. Breakdown also gives reason for a massive surveillance system, cameras everywhere, data harvesting, bio-metrics, facial, gait, syntax, AI recognition.

The vast security apparatus USA and the West created (insanely) post 9/11 (the Patriot Act) increased the secret police by whole orders of magnitude, and now they are not worried about the red herring of Islamism, they are to be turned onto ‘us’, the honest Citizen. Thus how it always goes as Totalitarians make their move. Censoring, spying, documenting, internal passports, fear, ratting out, political crimes, thought crime, MSM being propaganda, education all propaganda and thought control, Radicals taking over the political parties… and on and on… It is begun….

The Covid Response is exactly for this same cause – the destruction of the prosperous, unified, Free, West. As the encouraging of crime is done for an agenda – so was the removing of citizens rights, and the destruction of our economies (within 2 years), masqueraded as covid ‘Health.

The Covid Response had NOTHING to do with Health. It has been just another link in the chain, like the increase in crime, the destruction of education, the breaking of small business so monopoly Corporations control all commerce, the destruction of education, the destruction of all savings and pensions by inflation and zero interest, The Social Media Elites removing free speech from society, and so much more – all of which is quickly destroying us and the world. We are watching them build a much more frightening Iron Wall around us.

Gareth Rees
Gareth Rees
2 years ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

Damn good post. You summed up my view of what is going on brilliantly.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
2 years ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

I completely agree with you. The West, particularly the English-speaking parts of it, is debasing its public institutions in order to replace them with private entities accountable only to their owners.

Last edited 2 years ago by Julian Farrows
David Yetter
David Yetter
2 years ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

We Orthodox Christians refer to Soros as the Forerunner of Antichrist. (To fully make sense of that, you need to know we call St. John the Baptist “the Forerunner”.)

George Stone
George Stone
2 years ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

Are these the ‘Classic- Liberals’ to whom you refer, the ones that codified slavery and the slave trade in the American constitution?

Francis MacGabhann
Francis MacGabhann
2 years ago

Bingo. The “arc of history” myth. This is one of the (many) reasons I ditched the left, when I finally got it through my thick skull that history doesn’t have an arc. It doesn’t have a direction, it’s not going anywhere and it has no final destination. History is just a bunch of stuff that happened and which will go right on happening until the Big Crunch. When you start thinking in “arc of history” terms, what you are actually doing is simply taking yourself as the standard of good. After all, if history has an arc, then it follows that you, as the current generation, must be the most advanced intelligence that has ever lived. Why wouldn’t you assume your own superiority? And, it’s so much easier than examining your own conscience and behaviour every day, working out the right thing to do, doing it, and then getting up again the next morning and repeating the process ad infinitum, isn’t it?

Edward De Beukelaer
Edward De Beukelaer
2 years ago

yes, but people like discussing things and better so: gossiping. Telling how bad the others are… makes you feel good.
An article like he above is an analysis of some sort. What is often missing in such analyses is some idea of what is missing for things to improve. Usually two things: a fair system where all feel free to enterprise their life and also feel protected from others not playing by the rules. In this system it is likely that people perceive they can built a life.
If they feel they have no or little chances in life, they will start doing desperate things. (And there are of course always people that will never fit in.)
For those groups of have a culture that does not fit with our open democracies, we have to provide education and hope for them so they can start seeing a better life. This does not happen in a generation and is just an ongoing process. Hence each of us will be frustrated seeing that things do not improve … fast enough, and write complaining comments.
So yes, not a bad idea to start in your little corner even if that looks like the odds are all stacked against you. Maybe you ‘infect’ ( in a positive way) one of two people…

Gunner Myrtle
Gunner Myrtle
2 years ago

One of the big differences between conservatives and liberals is that conservatives think society bends towards darkness and liberals think it bends towards light. Conservatives are trying to preserve what we have – liberals think the future can only be better.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago
Reply to  Gunner Myrtle

Your first sentence qualifies as an aphorism.

Su Mac
Su Mac
2 years ago

The bizarre denial of reality on the left, all the way from smash and grab doesn’t exist, via love as an effective gang-banger deterrent, to nurses with vaccine injuries are imagining it.

JP Martin
JP Martin
2 years ago
Reply to  Su Mac

It is their favourite lie: Nothing to see here, please move on!

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
2 years ago
Reply to  JP Martin

And if you do see any wrong, you are obviously part of the problem. There, argument won.

Douglas Proudfoot
Douglas Proudfoot
2 years ago
Reply to  Su Mac

A government spokesperson announced today that the Ministry of Truth has been reorganized and privatized.  It’s now known as CNN, MSNBC, New York Times, Washington Post, Google, Twitter and Facebook.  Even the woke agree that censorship is more efficiently performed by private companies.

When you can censor the news and social media, bizarre denials of reality become almost irresistible. You know there will be very little pushback.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago

I’ve been in the unherd for only a few days, so I can’t know that it’s been talked about that the recent atrocity in Waukesha, Wisconsin was, according to CNN and The Washington Post, committed not by a 39 year old black man, but by his SUV.

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
2 years ago
Reply to  Bob Taylor

And a BLM spokesperson helpfully informed the public that that act in Waukesha was the ‘start of the revolution.’

Last edited 2 years ago by Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
2 years ago

Ingsoc rules.

Martin Smith
Martin Smith
2 years ago

Belief in the perfectabilty of the human is the scourge of the modern age. All the old religions have it right: human nature is the problem, restraining and training it is the way to enlightenment or salvation.

David Yetter
David Yetter
2 years ago
Reply to  Martin Smith

Quite. When I converted to Orthodox Christianity from Anglicanism, I kept the name “David” I had been given at birth, and took St. David of Wales as my patron saint precisely because he had been an opponent of the Pelagians, whose doctrine of the perfectibility of Man by his own effort, in secular form, I regarded as the plague of modernity.

Martin Smith
Martin Smith
2 years ago
Reply to  David Yetter

I have been enjoying Father Spiridon’s videos on YouTube, and some sermons by the Metropolitan of Moscow denouncing western decadence and critical theory and defending Christianity and Christian culture and history in a way that Welby, for one, would never do. I’m not keen on relics or the veneration of saints but I can overlook all that for the ageless wisdom and profound spiritual life. Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
2 years ago
Reply to  Martin Smith

Well summarised. Vanity is the downfall of progressivism. Governments in pursuit of the perfectability of health are forcing us into the straitjacket of lockdowns and vaxes, while they ruin economies and public morale.

Chris Wheatley
Chris Wheatley
2 years ago

All of the bad things in the world seem to originate in an area within 100 miles of Hollywood – smoking as a fashion, Aids, the romanticising of gun chases, the persecution of Indians, MeToo. Hollywood glorifies everything bad.

I suggest moving a few major actors and all of the film crews out to The Ukraine and starting a major war there. This will solve all problems and make America great again – at least for another ten years.

Last edited 2 years ago by Chris Wheatley
David Yetter
David Yetter
2 years ago
Reply to  Chris Wheatley

Are you sure all the major actors and few of the film crews wouldn’t be more effective in accomplishing your goal?

Chris Wheatley
Chris Wheatley
2 years ago
Reply to  David Yetter

Absolutely. My mistake.

Douglas Proudfoot
Douglas Proudfoot
2 years ago

In the US, the alternative was voting for Trump in 2020. The left spent 5 years of lie after lie to make backing Trump, and even voting Republican, socially toxic. We can’t win this by waiting for the perfect candidate or a perfect third party to magically appear. We can’t win if we believe the lies about how authoritarian people are alleged to be without looking at what each side actually does in office. We’re playing for all the marbles. The left will impose a lawless dictatorship of “experts” who will justify their arbitrary rule by claiming they’re promoting love and diversity, or “following the science.” Perfect is the enemy of good enough. Once the rule of law is gone, it’s extremely difficult to get back. The party of outlaws is the Democrats. Vote Republican.

Neil MacInnes
Neil MacInnes
2 years ago

“In California, those with enormous wealth are often also the loudest advocates for leniency towards criminals.”
Because that is the only way they can protect themselves. If they call for tougher policing, sentencing etc they will be denounced as greedy, self serving and targeted. If they offer solace to the criminals they are praised for their understanding and humanity and left alone – for now, anyway.

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
2 years ago
Reply to  Neil MacInnes

The Jacobins always end up guillotining themsves.

Jeffrey Chongsathien
Jeffrey Chongsathien
2 years ago

I lived in LA in the mid 2000s, and watched it (and the country?) go from a 2nd world/developing nation (which was shocking enough) to 3rd world nation status in 10 years.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago

For me, it was Houston, in about a year’s time ( in my part of the city ) in the early 90s. Our gangsters were Hispanic drug mobs. In 1990, the neighborhood had been a middle middle class one – America still had a middle class, then – in which there were gardening competitions and Christmas carolings. It was so quiet, it had a quality of sanctuary.

In 1993, there were four gunshot murders on my block alone.

I lived in an apartment. One day, the musica became too much to bear. I called management with a complaint, citing the particular apartment. A week later, on a Sunday morning at 4:00 precisely, a gang member in apprenticeship smashed in the window twelve feet from where I was sleeping. He had swung the 2×4 with such force, the front third of it had broken against the lattice and fallen into the room. One awakens quickly in such a situation, and one is not only not pleased, but tends to be vocal about it.

The tyro had stepped back a bit, and loitered to bask in his amusement at my reaction. What he didn’t realize is that the combination of his bright red knit shirt, the opacity of my curtain, the klieg lights in the courtyard, and his size made him a big fat easy kill.

But I didn’t have a gun. After a few seconds, he left. And any doubt I had had that if I were ever in such a situation I could shoot left with him.

Christina Dalcher
Christina Dalcher
2 years ago

Agreed! And what you say applies to many other illiberal issues. But I will point out the recent election in Virginia, where the tides changed color — not because people are talking and commenting, but because people are voting. It was a nice thing to see.

David McDowell
David McDowell
2 years ago

It’s what they voted for.

Douglas Proudfoot
Douglas Proudfoot
2 years ago
Reply to  David McDowell

And not just once, but early and often.

Kiat Huang
Kiat Huang
2 years ago

Excellent article, compelling content, well argued. Would such egregious, blatant and premeditated theft and robbery be driven by greed, avarice, impatience and lack of care for fellow man? Perhaps it is the result of rampant consumerism and a huge disparity in wealth. It could be a consequential disease.

Or maybe it’s just California eating itself. I hear the wealthier are going to Texas and Florida.

Sharon Overy
Sharon Overy
2 years ago
Reply to  Kiat Huang

The fact that shoplifting up to $950 at a time has been decriminalised and those brought in for the smash and grab raids have been released without bail probably has more to do with it.

Dustshoe Richinrut
Dustshoe Richinrut
2 years ago
Reply to  Kiat Huang

Everybody’s egregious these days. Apparently. Last year during lockdown I dug out a DVD of the movie Quiz Show, from 1994. Excellent wee movie set in America during the bursting-on-the-scene TV age of the 1950s. Based on a true story. In one scene, the Hank Azariah TV executive character, in response to a letter from the Ralph Fiennes high-brow quiz show contestant character declining further participation in the show, says to his TV exec buddy, What does “egregious” mean? This would have elicited laughs in 1994, because only toff lecturers like the Fiennes character would have used such a word, even as recently as the 1990s. But today, a ten-year-old from a well-off liberal family would probably say, Oh what a dumbo for not knowing what that word means!
Because the problems in California today are I feel based on the crude imitation of affluence, of a fattened-up and bloated popular culture, hastened by the arrival of the internet age and mobile phone-computers. The very well-off love to show off all the followers they have, after all. This all feeds into crime.
It’s a loss of class. There are no more high-brow toff-types anymore. They have rejoined the bloated quiz show. Morals have gone awry.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago
Reply to  Kiat Huang

It’s a depressing percentage, but still comparatively small, of the left behind who have become brigands. Most suffer their indignities without having a compulsion to take it out on others.

I’ve been attacked by sociopaths on four occasions, twice physically, twice financially, each attack separated from the others by many years. I do know about shocking, outraging loss. I have been pleased by the hard downfall of one of my financial assailants, and more so by the more buffered but also ever self – renewing downfall of the other. The guy who damned near murdered me in a mass murder when I was 7 died in committing the crime, which proved he was a gentleman, if lunatic.

I do know about outrageous fortune, and its reliable yield, PTSD. And I’ve never had the impulse to take it out on society, though I confess the occasional fantasy of being alone but for the companionship of my Glock, and a rightly terrified first cousin, in the Tennessee countryside.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago

I’m American, and have an instinct that Wokeness may have lost its bloom. The election of the magnificently named Winsome Sears, a black Republican, an immigrant from Jamaica, and an unashamed Christian who is a military veteran and strongly in support of gun ownership, seems to have shocked The Cathedral, as Rod Dreher and others before him have labeled Our Controllers. I tend not to keep up with the latest crime news, being a childhood mass murder survivor who was pushed by the rudeness of it all to become anti – crime, bigot though it makes me, but while I was aware of the stunning increase in violent crime in the past year and a half ( cities in flames, police precinct stations abandoned by intelligently terrified cops because they were forbidden to fight back, etc ), it’s my impression that the smash and grab swarmery is a recent phenomenon. Don’t these votaries of St George Floyd realize they’re only hurting themselves, as crime always does its perpetrators, the victims being negligible?

I have a 30 year old friend, a husband and father of three, who sensed in early 2020 that COVID-19 might in some subterranean way bring us a crimewave. He’s been carrying a handgun everywhere he goes since then.

Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
2 years ago
Reply to  Bob Taylor

Covid was always going to bring a crime wave
 that’s what shutting down businesses and livelihoods on a grand scale does.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago

Lesley, he had this presentiment when we were told it was going to be just a two week shutdown. I still think that’s remarkable.

Justin Clark
Justin Clark
2 years ago
Reply to  Bob Taylor
Emre Emre
Emre Emre
2 years ago

It looks like we’re moving towards a “Cybertruck” era. Security will be something the rich can afford by buying bullet proof armoured cars with shops and perhaps districts that require membership to enter. Perhaps pooled resources to arrange private armies of security enforcers – that movie Elysium comes to mind.

John Riordan
John Riordan
2 years ago

Agreed. It is obvious by now that Statism in all its forms simply ignores the righteous anger of those subject to its own stupidities and failures. What social media has proved over the past couple of decades is that most people assume that just because something is obvioiusly outrageous and wrong, that it will be fixed. Statists have learnt, to their delight, that all they have to do is just not fix things and let people complain.

Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
2 years ago
Reply to  John Riordan

I misread your reference to Statism as Satanism. The Devil must indeed be chuckling about the Hell on earth being introduced by Democrat voters in California. The serpent in the garden of Eden had a pretty seductive message.

Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
2 years ago
Reply to  John Riordan

You see, I feel your position is a big ideological overreach, which just reinforces the polarised politics in America. Which is a major reason the US is in such a mess. Immediately, many people on the moderate Left and Centre would say, he is another right wing extremist.

The modern Identitarian Left in the US are utterly appalling, but there is a complete failure on this forum to acknowledge the role of Republicans in this polarisation over several decades. These include tendentious interpretations of the 2nd Amendment (you know, it referred to a well regulated militia), anti-abortion legislation and finally the ‘birther’ movement which tried to delegitimise Obama. The first two were not decades ago such partisan issues, and neither of those are in most other Western countries, (ok the US has a very different history).

What do you mean by ‘statism’? Can you have a competent well-run state in your view? Some of the East Asian nations seem to do a pretty good job, as do in a different way Denmark and Norway. (Sweden, good on covid, bad on too much immigration and crime).

I think that project to get back to a competent administrative state, which could be limited in its functions, is essential. The libertarians, like the leftwing anarchists, are living in a fantasy in my view if they think the State can be dispensed with. The alternative in is a mafia society or warlordism, as all experience has shown.lwould be likely to arise. In fact defunding and demoralising the police is an example of how disastrous this would be. Perhaps in a big country like the US a minority can live in their own well armed cabins in the wilderness, but that is not a serious option for the majority living in towns and cities.

Last edited 2 years ago by Andrew Fisher
John Riordan
John Riordan
2 years ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

You are mistaken if you imagine my position relies on or includes any desire to defend the American Right in this context. But it is not viable to start listing the Republicans’ failures in this context, because they have nothing to do with the problems being described here. You also appear to conflate libertarianism with anarchy, which is a fairly serious error: they are not remotely the same thing.

This commonly occurs though, I have found, when criticising the excesses of big government in all its forms: it’s never long before someone pops up and accuses me of wanting the collapse of civilisation, and this is always wrong. Libertarians never want to get rid of the rule of law, and it is both tiresome and unnecessary to have to explain this when even the briefest search on the web will reveal what libertarianism stands for.

Statism is another term that can be looked up easily and therefore also isn’t something that needs to end up in an unnecessary argument for want of checking definitions, but either way it does not refer merely to an ideology that supports the existence of the State itself, so it is quite wrong to suppose that opposing Statism involves believing in no State at all.

Julie Blinde
Julie Blinde
2 years ago

Brilliant article by Ayaan Hirsi Ali

D Hockley
D Hockley
2 years ago

The people voted for this. They can hardly be surprised that they got it.

David Yetter
David Yetter
2 years ago
Reply to  D Hockley

You underestimate the stupidity of the people.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  D Hockley

The people did not vote for this, the vote has been manipulated to produce this. MSM, FB and Google and Youtube algorithms anyone?

David Yetter
David Yetter
2 years ago

I can’t remember whether it was on UnHerd or Quillette that I first encountered the notion of “luxury beliefs”. Unfortunately for its residents, California’s politics are dominated by politicians and voters who hold a lot of those and seem intent on using them as the basis for public policy, with crime sprees and wildfires among the results inflicted on the general populace.

Charles Hedges
Charles Hedges
2 years ago

From the time of The Iliad and Odyssey, the upper class/wealthy were warriors. 600 years ago the prime role of knights was fighting. The military and naval tradition is maintained in a few British middle and upper class families, especially amongst the Scottish Clans and some landowning families.
What has happened since the mid 1850s has been the rise in the power of a prosperous urban class who lack fighting spirit. Ibn Khaldun comparing town dwellers with Beduin said ” Men who are protected by walls and garrisons lose their uprightness and manliness”.The affluent class both hate and fear the fighting skills of the lower and landed military/naval classes. It would appear the apotheois of a wealthy urban class who lack figthing spirit appears to reside in California. They try to ban guns, undermine the Police, live in secure areas and pay for private security guards. In Greece, only tyrants were considered to need body guards.
At Crecy, Edward III was informed his 16 year old son was surrounded he replied ” Let him earn his spurs”.
We now have an effete and feeble wealthy class lacking fighting spirit last seen in the West in the Ancien Regime of France and before that in the Western Rome from about 350 AD. Their toleration of criminal violence is testament to their feebleness of spirit.

Norm Haug
Norm Haug
2 years ago
Reply to  Charles Hedges

Thank you, Charles. You raised the bar a few notches.

David McDowell
David McDowell
2 years ago

Great post.

John Hicks
John Hicks
2 years ago

Excellent article – again! “Caused by Affluence?” Often affluent people have secured their riches through adjustment of ethics and comprising their morality. Is California on the receiving end of remorse from these rich people now eager to slacken the institutional authority that should have tripped them up in earlier years?

Gunner Myrtle
Gunner Myrtle
2 years ago

Donald Trump was the counter revolution in the US – so it is possible.

David Yetter
David Yetter
2 years ago
Reply to  Gunner Myrtle

I’m not sure that’s evidence of the possibility of a counter-revolution. If Trump is the best we can come up with for a counter-revolutionary leader, that may be evidence for the opposite view. I think any of the leading GOP candidates could have bested Hillary Clinton. Just think, instead of year one of the Biden Administration, we would have been in year 5 of the Cruz Administration.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago
Reply to  David Yetter

Cruz has an almost supernatural genius for provoking detestation of himself. The former Republican Speaker of the House, the normally affable Jon Boehner ( sp? ) lacks subtlety in expression of his feelings about Cruz: “I HATE Ted Cruz.”

Cruz should always be remembered for his heroic standup for The Donald after Trump trashed Cruz’s wife. THIS is America, THIS is what we can be, remember that.

Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
2 years ago
Reply to  David Yetter

I agree, usually it is like a red rag to a bull on here to say so. Trump was a one term President who lost in 2020. He certainly lost the popular vote by a significant margin. That is not usually taken as a sign of a successful President.

Last edited 2 years ago by Andrew Fisher
Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
2 years ago
Reply to  David Yetter

Trump threw verbal hand grenades into the smug, self-assured snake pit of D.C. He broke all the rules of propriety in political debate. It was shocking. And it opened up for the first time in memory real debate about the misuse of democratically elected power in the US.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
2 years ago

Well Put ! Californians obviously need a lot more guns ironically since that is the only thing that some people respect – how bizarre…

Sharon Overy
Sharon Overy
2 years ago
Reply to  chris sullivan

And it looks as if it’s going to get harder to do so. Gavin Newsom is apparently about to try and severely restrict gun ownership in California.

Bob Taylor
Bob Taylor
2 years ago
Reply to  Sharon Overy

I have no doubt that the majesty and terror which new antigun laws in California would provoke in its people would throttle any instinct which they might have to defend themselves. This has always worked.

Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
2 years ago
Reply to  chris sullivan

You want to give Progressives a lot more guns?!

Andrew Roman
Andrew Roman
2 years ago

If you decline to enforce the criminal law you are effectively licensing crime.

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
2 years ago

Vanity is what drives these smug leftists to enforce their inane and dangerous agenda on the world. It produces a conviction that they are the vector of goodness and morality in the world, standing in the breach to save it from the ‘heartless’, the ‘racist’, the ‘bigot’ the nationalist and all the other vermin of the ‘extreme fascist right wing’ who stand in the way of their utopia.

They will even maintain preposterous stances like defunding the police and legalising theft to enrage those they see as the benighted and unenlightened for resisting. It is often just pure hate that drives them – make no mistake.

Orlando Skeete
Orlando Skeete
2 years ago

Genuine question, is the increase in crime actually caused by defunding the police or increasing inequality? I’m assuming covid has pushed a lot of the non laptop class deeper into poverty

Arnold Grutt
Arnold Grutt
2 years ago
Reply to  Orlando Skeete

There is no demonstrable connection between poverty and a predisposition to crime. The greatest cause of crime is racial and cultural sentimentality.

Judy Englander
Judy Englander
2 years ago
Reply to  Arnold Grutt

I’ve been shopping for dvds and when I see the description ‘heartwarming’ in the reviews I feel slight nausea and click to the next. In politics I have a similar feeling when I see the word ‘love’.

George Glashan
George Glashan
2 years ago
Reply to  Judy Englander

Judy surely you should be shoplifting for dvds, paying for things marks you out as an oppressor.

Judy Englander
Judy Englander
2 years ago
Reply to  George Glashan

Yup, I’ve missed a trick there.

Brian Villanueva
Brian Villanueva
2 years ago
Reply to  Orlando Skeete

Poverty has some causal relationship to this type of small robbery / burglary. But I’ve never seen evidence that inequality by itself would have any effect.

On the poverty front, median household income dropped by 2.9% in America between 2019 and 2020. This is comparable to the drop that occurred between 2007-2008 and 2009-2011. In other words, the income drop of last year was typical for a significant recession.

However, those other two periods did not see significantly increasing crime problems. There is, however, a well known correlation between police presence and crime (more cops, fewer criminals). It appears reliably enough that many sociologists would deem it a causal relationship. While COVID lockdowns likely exacerbated tensions, the most likely cause of the current crime wave was the reduced level of police enforcement, whether by actual policy, or by officers simply deciding “pursuing that guy isn’t worth the risk of an IAB investigation or worse.”

Last edited 2 years ago by Brian Villanueva
Earl King
Earl King
2 years ago

Lunacy.

Phil Mac
Phil Mac
2 years ago

Until it’s some big figure from the top of social media Corporates, or MSM, who gets to feel this they won’t care. It’s just the little people, they are expendable anyway.
Talk about letting them eat cake!

Last edited 2 years ago by Phil Mac
Katalin Kish
Katalin Kish
2 years ago
Reply to  Phil Mac

Exactly. I am one of the expandables in Australia’s lawless scenario. We are expected to accept being denied justice with obedient resignation and silent dignity – out of sight. It is treated as gross indecency if we respectfully ask someone to do something about crimes against us. The only “help” is from well-meaning, but utterly useless, untrained volunteers, who do their best to increase victims’ ability to live with ongoing crimes. Who we were, what lives, what aspirations we might had had prior to becoming showcase exhibits of what lawlessness means vanish at the instant of becoming one of the many targets of any bored psycho. See my detailed comment.

Dustshoe Richinrut
Dustshoe Richinrut
2 years ago

Well, what does one say? Love means never having to say you’re sorry.
The opposite of tough love.

Last edited 2 years ago by Dustshoe Richinrut
Cantab Man
Cantab Man
2 years ago

When I ran some errands at Union Square the week after the Louis Vuitton, Nordstrom, etc, smash-and-grab, the place looked like a war zone. Boarded up windows. Police cruisers and groups of police officers standing on every block in downtown SF.

After that incident, the very progressive Mayor came out and sounded like a regular Republican…to paraphrase: “we’ll bring these criminals to justice, we support the good work of the Police, we need more Police on the streets of San Francisco, this is unacceptable…” and so forth. First time she’s said any of those things.

Rumor has it that the luxury stores and businesses issued an ultimatum: Clean up SF or they’re gone.

And who can blame them? They pay exorbitant rental rates in SF throughout the year, and the one time of year they try to recoup is Christmas time. But when I went to the city on a Saturday, relatively very few people were shopping compared with prior years. People are shopping luxury brands online to avoid the lawlessness of SF.

San Francisco is entering a lengthy period of blight…unless the citizens start electing independents and republicans to make democrats work for their vote by cleaning up the city.

I feel bad for the poor who live and work in SF. They bought in to the progressive marches of 2020 and the defund the police movement, thinking they had the support of democrat leaders to make things better. Instead, those who have enough money are leaving, and businesses such as Walgreens and CVS are shutting down stores in SF due to massive theft. Many who don’t have transportation options rely on these nearby stores for daily needs and they are now running out of options.

In short, the Democrats’ coddling of criminals and defunding the police in SF has ghettoized the city for the poor living there who have no other options. The day will come when the progressive movements of 2020-2021 will be seen as progressive and rich colonizers trying to enact some false dream that utterly fails, and then they leave the hellhole of SF to the poor while they fly down to their other mansion in quiet Santa Barbara.

So much for the dreams of 2020.

Peter Mott
Peter Mott
2 years ago

There is a difference between crime and banditry. Bandits attack in numbers and make no attempt to hide, then they melt away with their spoils. Ordinary criminals try to remain hidden and run away if disturbed. I am waiting for cases of banditry in California. This piece suggests we are nearly there.

Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
2 years ago

Left wing virtue signalling and hypocrisy and been around for a long time. But now it seems we have reached another level. It seems that many or even most so-called ‘Progressives’ have become totally unhinged, now even supporting measues that cause huge economic and physical damage their own cities.

Although California has this reputation, it is relatively recent except in San Francisco and Los Angeles. The state as a whole often used to often vote Republican eg Reagan.

Last edited 2 years ago by Andrew Fisher
J S
J S
2 years ago

Laziness is an interesting idea, but intimidation is more realistic. People are simple afraid to state things as they are for fear of being labeled racist, etc. Very much like the former USSR, up is down, day is night, etc.

Richard Turpin
Richard Turpin
2 years ago

You reap what you sow.

Bill W
Bill W
2 years ago

I was pondering this paradox yesterday. It also explains net zero etc etc.

Justin Clark
Justin Clark
2 years ago

But with that increased quality of life, we’ve become lazy. We’ve stopped paying attention. We’ve come to take for granted the institutions that hold up our affluent society. We have assumed that they would continue functioning without our personal involvement and investment. It seems that when a society is as wealthy as ours and as insulated from day-to-day threats, the vigilance to maintain its institutions wilts.

Precisely that! Great article

Dan Croitoru
Dan Croitoru
2 years ago

A Resistance-like movement should find funding, therefore it should have something to monetize on. The French Resistance blew up German trains to get money from Britain. We should denounce people and publish a black list. Rich people should fund us not to find themselves on those lists when all is over.

Katalin Kish
Katalin Kish
2 years ago

For the perpetrators, the best kind of love is tough love. For the victims, whether they’re affluent or not, the best kind of love is being protected. We don’t need “social justice”, just plain justice.

Amen.
Lack of police fit for purpose wreaks havoc in Australia also. This comment describes what it feels like to be on the victims’ side of the insanity of unpunished crimes, of caring about those, who commit crimes – only.
I was born and lived the first 30 years of my life in a country behind the Iron Curtain all but destroyed by many decades of the communist yoke. Not quite the Horn of Africa, but bad enough to marvel at the peaceful opulence of the Western World for the first two decades of my life in Australia at least.
While Australia too suffers from the bigotry of low expectations for people who weren’t born to Caucasian parents, and Australia too have the “team empathy” syndrome, there is no “just” history for victims of crimes in Australia, and public servant witnesses to crimes punishable by 10-years in jail better keep quiet too. We have had a fertile environment to welcome BLM and all that comes with it.
Victoria Police – the only law enforcement we have in Melbourne, Australia – expanded rather drastically, not contracted in recent years. However, Victoria Police don’t have a duty of care, they are accountable to no one in reality, they are allowed to investigate themselves, and they are allowed to keep a complete information blackout about their self-investigation thanks to s194 of the IBAC Act.
So, we don’t have a law-enforcement agency fit for purpose. This may be worse, than police being de-funded.
Since 2009 I learned exactly, what Ayaan Hirsi Ali wrote “people either have to adapt to the crime surrounding them or to flee”.
In 2009 by becoming a world-champion I also became one of the many targets of a stalker coworker whom I never even dated and his many accomplices, none of whom shows any fear of getting caught, let alone punished. Ever.
Since 2009 I learned, what peaceful opulence masks, that victims of serious crimes are treated in my beloved Australia like broken, contaminated, worthless rubbish, best forgotten.
Since 2009 I experienced that even the act of trying to report serious crimes as a public servant witness to these crimes (Business Analyst, The Victorian Electoral Commission, 2009-2012) is treated as if the witness is trying to commit an extremely indecent act, or worse. When trying to report debilitating cyber-crimes, the situation is even worse, because the victim/witness to serious cyber-crimes is treated as if she tried to report UFO landings or Big Foot sightings. While hackable smart-meters are installed on every house receiving electricity – irrespective of surplus producing solar panels in a big city like Melbourne. Hackable smart-meters are evidently a stalker’s wet dream.
Only those who commit crimes are treated innocent until proven guilty in a country like Australia.
Non-criminal witnesses to serious crimes and victims of serious crimes are treated like scheming, lying, low-life scum, who must have provoked the poor perpetrator into doing whatever was committed.
The victim of crimes is assumed to have made poor life choices, to have lived a reckless life leading to their inevitable demise. The victim is assumed to have pushed the poor perpetrator too far. The victim must have deserved, even called for what has happened to them. Especially when the victim is a Caucasian female, and not even LGBTQI+.
The perpetrator on the other hand is assumed to have a bright future, deserves all the support known to mankind.
It is low-lives like victims of serious crimes/public servant witnesses of serious crimes that need to be silenced – whatever it takes.
So, Victoria Police kindly ignore, dismiss, ridicule, humiliate, patronise, treat like a raging lunatic, try to discredit and intimidate public servant witnesses and victims, who try to report serious crimes, who insist on Victoria Police investigate and stop serious crimes. You see knowing about ongoing serious crimes and not trying to have these crimes on record at least by law-enforcement is an unbearable burden for non-criminals. It feels like complicity.
Victoria Police even took out an intervention order against me with conditions that could not be proven to have been attempted, let alone met, under the threat of imprisonment. Since I write requirements for a living (Consulting Business Analyst), I spotted this trap immediately, and defended myself against it. I also defended myself against Victoria Police’s entrapment attempt as they tried to cajole me into destroying evidence in their criminal case against me.
I have no criminal background whatsoever. I am a female Australian citizen professional who wants to be free from a stalker’s crimes.
Also, only the perpetrator’s rehabilitation is paid for, only the perpetrator’s rehabilitation matters. I have been financing my own rehabilitation from 12+ years of serious crimes with no end in sight.
To qualify for the reimbursement of my out-of-pocket medical expenses I would need to undergo a court procedure, where a judge would decide whether I am of a good enough character to receive reimbursement of my out-of-pocket medical expenses. My character would be assessed based on evidence not available to me. In effect I would be put on trial, the victim of ongoing, serious, perfect crimes since mid-2009 to this day. The last crime I know about was committed yesterday.
Without accepting the humiliation of having to go to court to beg for the reimbursement of my medical expenses, I was reimbursed for two PTSD counselling sessions by a victim support agency.
I have stopped counting the PTSD counselling sessions I have attended and paid for after 22 last year. Since crimes are ongoing, it is impossible to tell, how long I will need therapy. My only alternative would be to commit suicide or flee Australia for a new life in a country like Bhutan or Mongolia, never ever trying to check on my loved ones via any means any more. The stalker in my case will always know where I live, because in Australia voting is compulsory, so electoral commissions will have my up-to-date home address, and they synchronise their data. There is no boundary to cyber-crimes beyond technology, this is why Bhutan or Mongolia could work.
The stalker has displayed an dazzling array of risk-free crimes since 2009, so I know, not even snail mail is safe from him. He knows of course where all my loved ones live. Since the stalker appears to trade information he is/was able to steal via his IT helpdesk assistant job for Crimes As A Service delivered by career-criminals, and their activities are not limited to Australia, no industrialised country would be a safe destination for a new life. I am too old to start a new life in Bhutan or Mongolia, and I am too angry to commit suicide.
Perfect crimes are crimes that will never be punished, irrespective of their impact. Not that any amount of punishment would ever make the trauma of crimes undone.
Care for victims of crimes is left to organisations with no power, no influence, no money. Untrained volunteers provide infantilising “support”, aimed purely at increasing the victim’s ability to live with crimes. When this “support” is refused, the victim has to fight off welfare units coming to one’s house in suburbia consisting of an ambulance and a police car, complete with uniformed police officers with guns and an ambulance crew, all sirens blaring, all lights flashing, to check whether the victim of crimes is in the process of committing suicide.
So it is not surprising that mangled corpses of women like Eurydice Dixon, Aiia Maasarwe, Masa Vukotic, Renea Lau, Jill Meagher and who knows how many others turn up in Melbourne, in the 21st century. Victoria Police then parrot glib virtue signalling rubbish about zero tolerance for violence against women. While a stalking victim would need to provide the home address of a stalker even for an intervention order request at court. The victims of violent crimes I listed above, like me, never even called their stalkers/murderers a friend of any kind. To get a stalker’s home address we would need to try to stalk the stalker – while sustaining employment, paying mortgages and bills, fulfilling family obligations etc. While the stalker in my case has/had access to every woman’s home address via his IT helpdesk assistant job at The Victorian Electoral Commission.
Only dead women show up in statistics, so Victoria Police have an incentive to make sure dead-women statistics are as low as possible.
The solution is easy: treat execution-style murders as non-suspicious suicide (Jennifer Tanner). Jennifer Tanner shot herself in the middle of her forehead with a long barrelled shotgun – using her toes to pull the trigger. TWICE. Yet achieving perfect aim even after one bullet entered her brains already. Because someone wanting to kill herself would choose almost impossible acrobatics risking catastrophic injuries instead of a peaceful passage from this world to the next. Jennifer Tanner was not known to have any psychiatric illnesses and was not depressed, let alone suicidal. What she did have was a brother in-law. A Victoria Police officer.
Non-suspicious suicides of women don’t show up in crime statistics.
Crimes never investigated = crimes never happened = fabulous crime statistics.
No one will ever know how many women (men/child) are on life-support in various institutions “technically alive”. Of any skin colour. While people like Oprah talk about “love”.

Last edited 2 years ago by Katalin Kish
Drahcir Nevarc
Drahcir Nevarc
2 years ago

“do not underestimate the power of moral bullying to intimidate people who need to see themselves on the side of good”
I agree. We need to start morally bullying the woke fascists and racists. There are more of us than there are of them. We need to start shunning and ostracising them, denying them employment, generally treating them the way we treat BNP or NF members etc.

Drahcir Nevarc
Drahcir Nevarc
2 years ago
Reply to  Drahcir Nevarc

weird

Douglas H
Douglas H
2 years ago

I’d respect this article more if it cited data instead of a series of angry anecdotes, each one of which is no doubt true but which together simply don’t add to to a balanced picture. Listing a series of robberies is straight out of the Daily Mail, I’d expect better than that from this author. (Before you have a go, I’m not agreeing with effective decriminalisation of robbery, or defunding the police)

Matty D
Matty D
2 years ago

This is such a partial article. How about the causes of crime? How about the extremes of poverty and wealth that exist in the world’s richest country? How about that there is no opportunity for the poor to become rich in America, that one’s live chances are determined at birth? How about the absence of a health or welfare safety net that leads to poverty and leads to crime? If mass incarceration was so great, why is this crime occurring? The fundamental problem is that Americans want to live in a selfish, individualistic society. They are simply reaping what they have sown.

Gordon Black
Gordon Black
2 years ago
Reply to  Matty D

The cause of crime is criminals: nothing to do with extreme poverty or the absence of health or welfare safety nets. My ancestors and I grew up in these conditions, hard times, but no criminals so zero crime.

Barbara Williams
Barbara Williams
2 years ago

There is a serious malaise in American society and in many of Unherd’s authors and readers. Many cannot see the unfolding climate and ecological collapse escalate is undermining what we currently call ‘civilised’ society. In truth we only attained our exalted civilised state by extracting natural resources way beyond the capacity of our eco-systems ability to support such wasteful occupants. We have been in ecological overshoot for over 50 years and Physics and Nature are now reclaiming the debts. The only way is down, we either scale back deliberately or accept the violence and tragedy that accompanies chaotic collapse. The whole world is in jeopardy from the lifestyles and the number of its human occupants, therefore California, like the rest of the world will never be safe again in our lifetimes. Ecological overshoot – Wikipedia

Andrew D
Andrew D
2 years ago

Thanks, useful tip. Next time I’m arrested for looting and thievery, I’ll say it’s all the fault of the ‘unfolding climate and ecological collapse’.

D Hockley
D Hockley
2 years ago

Thank you for posting this piece of comedy; you brightened up my morning…..Unfortunately, I was drinking coffee when I started reading it and thus my keyboard is now wet and sticky.

Last edited 2 years ago by D Hockley
Douglas Proudfoot
Douglas Proudfoot
2 years ago

Let’s ask a basic question. Who says today’s climate is optimal? Historical records show vineyards in Roman Britain. Today’s climate is too cold to allow vineyards there. The Roman Warm Period was an estimated 2° C warmer than it is now, which was a good thing for humanity, not the disaster global warming alarmists are always predicting from warmer temperatures. Why should we impoverish ourselves for a suboptimal global temperature?

Leif Ericson says man-made global warming is a myth. During the Medieval Warm Period (MWP), 950-1250 CE, fields in Greenland were cultivated. During the Little Ice Age (LIA), 1300-1850 CE, these fields became permafrost and still are. That says the Medieval Warm Period was warmer than it is right now, although not as warm as the Roman Warm Period. Fossil fuels weren’t a factor in MWP or LIA.

Look up the Wikipedia entry for Paleoclimatology. The graphs shows the earth has had both no ice and been an ice ball. In neither case did man exist as a species yet. The extremes in the paleoclimate record show that natural variation dominates any alleged man-made climate change. Before we spend tens of trillions of dollars, shouldn’t we try to understand the natural forces that change climate over geologic time?

It is statistical folly to use about 100 years of data to extrapolate climate cycles that last hundreds or thousands of years. Only the gullible or math challenged believe in the statistical validity of models built on 100 years’ worth of data, that have failed to predict future temperature patterns.

Warren T
Warren T
2 years ago

In the words of the wise teenage Scandinavian sage, “how dare you!”

David Coleman
David Coleman
2 years ago

Good news for Douglas Proudfoot. There are now over 500 vineyards in Britain , and almost 200 wineries, including a few as far north as Scotland. It is our fastest growing agricultural sector. Cheers!

Warren T
Warren T
2 years ago

I have a difficult time, being someone apparently blind to your truths, understanding the connection between climate change and the decisions of some municipalities to cease the enforcement of existing laws?

Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
2 years ago

By Physics and Nature reclaiming their debts, do you really mean the previously disadvantaged Drug Addicts, Pimps and Thugs?

Laura Cattell
Laura Cattell
2 years ago

This article falls into the ‘it depends on what you read’ category.

Julie Blinde
Julie Blinde
2 years ago
Reply to  Laura Cattell

Please explain

Mikey Mike
Mikey Mike
2 years ago
Reply to  Julie Blinde

Laura’s not a big explainer.

Julie Blinde
Julie Blinde
2 years ago
Reply to  Mikey Mike

Ah, ok
I suppose everything depends on what you read. Either you join a bubble, or you rage against it like me

Warren T
Warren T
2 years ago
Reply to  Laura Cattell

Very true.
I’m sure what you read shows nothing but blissful life on the streets of San Francisco. However, when one sees with his/her own eyes what is happening in several large Blue cities, as I do daily, it leads to the cognitive dissonance we are all suffering from.
The images attached provide wonderful proof as to what we are being subjected to daily:comment image