In a move that surprises no one – certainly not the regular Gin and Tacos reader – all of those surplus Mine Resistant-Ambush Protected Vehicles that Congress bought are finding their way into the hands of domestic police departments.

In a rather crass effort to score political points by showing how much they Support the Troopstm, the folks in Congress went on something of an MRAP binge in the Aughts. Like so much surplus Department of Defense gear, it was only a matter of time until the Pentagon started handing them out to local governments in desperation to get rid of the goddamn things. Alternatives include shipping them to the US for (expensive) storage, giving them to other governments, and cutting them apart for scrap at four cents per pound.

The Dallas County Sheriff has taken possession of an International MaxxPro, pictured here:

That Dallas County has the vehicle is indisputable, leaving only the question of why. Why? Why in god's name would county sheriffs need something so heavy that it's barely functional for street use? Well…

The underlying reason seems to be that military trucks are fucking cool, but no one's actually saying that. The sheriff's office is touting it as a tool that will help them better serve warrants.

"Having a tactical vehicle will not only provide warrants execution with the equipment to assist in performing their jobs but will provide an overall safety arch," Chief Deputy Marlin Suell wrote to commissioners.

The world makes more sense to me knowing that the sheriff of Dallas County, Texas is named "Marlin Suell."

At least this kind of bald, pointless, hyper-overkill militarization will start to make Americans think twice about the changes in police in this country since 1980, right?


Oh for fuck's sake.

32 thoughts on “WARRANT SERVICE”

  • When all we experience is inevitably evidence for our irrational beliefs, we can stop pretending that The Dark Ages are a thing of the past.

    Mind you, my one comfort–tenuous though it is–is that the people who believe Obama is some version (political, moral, literal) of the Antichrist–well, they don't *actually* believe that. Because if they did–if they really, completely, totally did, well, they'd have to do something about it, right? Because being confronted with that kind of absolute evil, and doing nothing about it, would make them…complicit? Subhuman cowards? Indifferent to the fall of humanity? Surely they can't be any of those things. Because, you know, God and the Bible and Jesus–no room in heaven for the noncommittal!

    Which means…they don't actually believe their rhetoric. At all. In which case, guys? Please? Either tone your rhetoric down to the point where it at least approaches sincerity, or shut the fuck up, because you're lying.

  • well, what do you expect. All that prestige and power by looking "cool" and having the latest "terrorist" fighting machines in our cities!

    what more could the local Rightwingers dream of?

    once you go down the path to militarization of the local police, do you think the local police will give up these "toys."? never in a million years. talk about waste and outright State Gov control.

    i really do love it how this "escalation" into the Police State is okay becaue of "Freedom." at least i don't have to grow up under the illusion that the State or Local Police are there to "protect" me. Protect me from what? the local Military Police who have all these "toys" to show how "gung ho"/American they are.

    sad to think this is just another step into the Right wing illusion of power equals "Freedom."

    the fear employed in such "window" dressing is further proof of the serfs we have all become to the 1% who run everything. Got to keep the Peons in their place.

    A Banana Republic without equal. Freedom American Style.

  • The heavy surplus enables US police departments to increase their already criminal violence. It also offers the rich better protection in case of the masses try to rebel.

  • Cops are weird. On the one hand, they're pretty much libertarians themselves — fine with guns (I mean, they get actual safety training so it's not that surprising), against Big Gummint and the Nanny State, probably more open to drug legalization than you might think (although they're all about enforcing existing drug laws for now).

    That said, there's a real disconnect because, well, they are the embodiment of Big Gummint and the Nanny State themselves. The ones I've met IRL don't seem to grok this contradiction.

  • The 1% are clearly running this place for their own benefit.
    The 99% appear to be mostly marching morons who couldn't run a lemonade stand.

    Remind me again how it is that representative democracy is supposed to make that work?

  • What @middle seaman said.
    Somewhere, Louis and his Mrs, are wondering where the 18th Century version of these kinds of hand-me-down's from the military were.

  • My favorite part of American politics since 2009 is ODS (Obama derangement syndrome). Like its cousin KDS it causes otherwise intelligent people to say incredibly stupid things. It's vector is oral aural (mouth to ear).

    I am starting to think that people with ODS are really gullible. If I sold insurance I would target these folks because they seem willing to believe anything!

  • Honestly, I'm confused why a LEO would want such a beast. Sure, its going to look awesome painted white and black with the county seal on it, and in a parade it will kick ass. When serving warrants, it will be very intimidating. But what if the person your serving the warrant to is w196312 from the pic above, and now has proof beyond a shadow of a doubt that "Obummer is comin' far ma guns!" Then what do the cops do?

    Seriously, ask your friend who says that guns are there to ensure that the government can be overthrown if it starts oppressing the people. It may take some convincing, bit eventually they will tell you their plans to shoot cops.

    Personally, I'd have more respect if the sheriff had said "It's going to look cool once we paint it, but really, its just going to take up space in our garage. We might bring it out for photo ops and parades, but in 2023 we will sell it for scrap at a fraction of what it will have cost taxpayers to maintain this beast. But it will be a fun ride, that's for sure."

  • Please can I come inside your overall safety arch! Great for parades – some badass stuff rolling down Main Street. USA USA. And, of course, in Texas.
    Practically speaking, this thing would have been useless in every one of the mass shootings or any other domestic incident over the last few years. No impact whatsoever. If the big boys can get this stuff why would they care about W196's little pea shooters?

  • John Danley.
    Which is funny in and of itself, because the only reason the military gets rid of stuff like this, is that they have newer, more lethal, shit coming!

    And any "batshitloonitarian survivalists" (Btw – LOOOOVE that phrase!) with one, will find themselves out-shot, and then squished by the newer version.

  • All politics aside, I would think a vehicle like that would be very expensive to maintain.

    All that weight has to put a lot of strain on the transmission and suspension.

  • @Mjr:
    "All politics aside, I would think a vehicle like that would be very expensive to maintain."

    Yup, we have LEOs complaining they don't have enough money in the budget for useful stuff, or a couple of more officers to ease the strain on existing staff, or much need psyche help, or better training, heck aren't some state govts starting to go after First Responder "entitlements" because of "budgetary constraints"?

    So yeah, a GFDB white elephant.

  • Assuming they don't have any weaponry, why not just sell them to the public? I mean… if someone wants to lumber around in that giant tin-can, let 'em. It would have the upside of providing continued employment in the civilian world for those who maintained them for the military.

  • The militarization of many of our police forces across the country is one of, if not the most troubling socio-polical movements over the last 10-12 years.

  • I used to live in rural North Carolina with neighbors who had guns out the wazoo. Big, important guns, not pissant rifles. I always laughed when they explained that their guns were to protect them from the Government, which they saw as hellbent on confiscating their weapons. "You need rocket launcher to take out the drones'" I'd point out, but they never heard that. They were convinced that somehow the Government would be a couple of black cops arriving in a squad car with a couple of sidearms. These people (my former neighbors) don't think two moves deep. Their understanding of Government and its capacity to crush them was drearily stupid.

  • Re. Big Sister:

    "Their understanding of Government and its capacity to crush them was drearily stupid."

    You say that like it's a bad thing.

  • @Mathhew: "I believe the Ohio State University Police Dept. bought one as well."

    Shhhh – don't let the commenters know that. They'd rather use it as an excuse to laugh at gun owning republican hicks.

  • Chris: Why are you assuming a Big Ten State University is always a bastion of liberals? Especially given Ohio's dreary predisposition to elict mnouth breathers.

  • Chris: Why are you assuming a Big Ten State University is always a bastion of liberals? Especially given Ohio's dreary predisposition to elict mouth breathers.

  • Throw in the problem that all MRVs have; topheaviness and a tendency to roll over. Give your average copper one of these after a long night of playing "F&F: Tokyo Drift" and you've got a premanufactured traffic-tie-up.

  • moderateindy says:

    And any "batshitloonitarian survivalists" (Btw – LOOOOVE that phrase!) with one, will find themselves out-shot, and then squished by the newer version.

    Actually, I think the survivalists would be perfect for this vehicle. I think the preppers aren't worried about gub'mint takeover, but complete breakdown of society. So, they want to be the ones with the most badass equipment during the Chaos. In this case an actual cogent reason.
    The militia types on the other hand that think that they could fight against a tyrannical gov't, are the type's that are fooling themselves, because they would not be able to fight back against an actual move by the US military to take over, and in fact, owning something like this would probably make them the very first targeted.
    So let's not lump the survivalists in with the militia types.
    Just kidding, they're all bat crap crazy, I just love making distinction's when it comes to crazy people. Like how the media calls one Republican moderate. and another right wing, even though their voting record is exactly the same.

  • Surprised no one mentioned this but I don't imagine this will be on the roads long. Ask yourself what sort of MPG this thing gets. 8? 5? And what about parts? There are mechanics out there who can service it, but they are scarce and they know it. And how much will parts costs to John Q Sheriff? I'd say this is a colossal money waster of the highest order. In 2 or 3 years this will be scrapped and the rubes will still vote in the dipshits who purchased this.

  • 4:00 a.m. No-knock search. This thing on the lawn. Body armor SWAT squad. Guns drawn.

    Sorry, wrong house!

    And with the government ~watching~ us (and having the right to do so post- Patriot Act) it's a good idea to take Ari Fleischer's advice and ~be careful what you say~.

  • How the hell do you serve a warrant with this thing? If you step out of the vehicle, you are just as much in danger as if you drove up in a standard cop car. Maybe you can drive up on the lawn, smash through the front of the house and then hand the warrant out through the blinded windows. How can I hold onto my optimistic attitude when the decent into mindless stupidity seems unending?

  • You've gotta hand it to the RWNJs: they've perfected their technique for simultaneously knob-slobbering the guys in tactical armor while feeding their "OMG LIBRALS COMING FOR MAH PENIS, ER, GUNZ" paranoia without missing a beat.

Comments are closed.