Showing posts with label gangs. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gangs. Show all posts

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Jerry Miculek Shooting Gangster Style and Sex Toy Fighting Children

I do have to ding them a bit on style. While Eric of Iraq Vet 8888 did have the presence of mind to grab his crotch neither of them threw the bullets or taunted the people they were shooting at. An excellent lesson on these modern urban skills can be found in a previous video,

Thanks to Commander Zero for finding this gem. If you have guns in the home and small children I believe it is essential to secure firearms unless they are directly under your personal control.We keep a Sentry Safe home defender in the bedroom and most of the remaining guns in a big safe. Another option is small locking cases that will hold a pistol. These can be had for $30ish and can easily be stashed in a nightstand, dresser or cabinet.

Anyway hope you all have a great Saturday!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Hybrid Threats and Modern Law Enforcement in the Border States

Hybrid Warfare is a strategy of warfare that blends some combination of conventional forces, unconventional/ guerrilla forces, terrorism and criminal elements as well as cyber and information warfare. Instead of dealing with one type of threat a force ends up dealing with  multiple threats. Potentially these threats are working together though some (typically criminals) may just be doing bad stuff in the same time and space. Basically it's a big mess.

Of particular concern to the border states is the overlap between gangs and guerrilla/ terrorist (in this context I do not find that term productive as, excluding the most violent and pointless atrocities, it often boils down to a value judgement of a group so I use guerrilla instead) organizations. To some degree large gangs are guerrilla organizations and guerrilla organizations are criminal. 

Mexican drug cartels cutting the heads off people and hanging them from bridges is certainly done to inspire fear which is by definition terrorism. On the other hand guerrilla groups inevitably resort to a variety of criminal acts for fund raising.  Selling drugs to fund guerrilla actions is boringly cliche. The IRA was big on smuggling and various forms of fraud. All those Aryan groups in the 80's and early 90's were big on robbing banks. You get the point. What it boils down to for me is the primary purpose of the organization. Mexican drug cartels exist to make money by selling drugs. A bunch of folks robbing banks to fund the revolution are their guerrilla goals.

In any case I was involved in an interesting discussion  that is worth talking about. Took me awhile to digest it so now we have story time with Ryan. Some thoughts in no particular order:

-The fusion between various federal agencies, state, county and local law enforcement is significant.  Information sharing and intelligence gathering, training, a variety of joint operations and such. They are far more connected than in years back. This is necessary to deal with a variety of threats that do not neatly fit into jurisdictional boundaries. On the other side of the coin I can certainly see how this fusion could concern some folks. Regardless of your value judgement on the matter this is here to stay.

-As to our southern border. It is a good reminder that barriers only stop people if they are guarded. Barriers without dudes carrying rifles watching them only serve to slow movement.

-Cell phones. I'm going to spot you the credit to assume the normal everyday cell phone most people carry is not around if you are doing something it would be a problem if ANYBODY knows about. If you did not know that I would recommend educating yourself. We are talking about semi anonymous disposable pre paid cell phones. These phones are also known as dirt phones, drug phones and my personal favorite hoe phones. Even still this just doesn't work. I've been talking about it for years. Like I said a long time ago.

The theory is that if someone on one anonymous cell phone calls someone on another one it is totally discrete. Easy wireless secure communications for prices any insurgent can afford. 

Here is reality. People are lazy and stupid and modern methods of tracking/ snooping on cell phones are very good. This is how laziness and modern snooping collide. Lets say a dozen insurgents all have anonymous pre paid cell phones. Someones gets lazy and uses theirs to call their Moms house or their buddy at the local Mosque to ask what time the potluck is. Being as the people who are looking for them have done a good job in targeting they were snooping on Momma and the Mosques phone lines. They electronically snoop on the pre paid cell  phone now, really recording and searching for key words (bomb, Allah, US, soldier, rifle, Israel, whatever). Pretty darn quickly they realize this phone is of interest. Lazy Insurgent calls one of his co conspirators to talk about the big soccer game or planting some IED's. Now they got Co Conspirators number from Lazy Insurgent. Of course being smart they wait awhile and Co Conspirator calls a couple more Insurgent buddies and so does Lazy Insurgent. More likely than not the whole network gets taken down.

 If I was doing something where shady where the only viable communications option was cell phones they would be collected then dumped regularly. Probably weekly on a normal basis then as needed before then after significant operations. Only 'work' calls (and maybe some completely random planned ones) would be made with a significant penalty for any inflactions.

- If you weren't tracking it  UAV technology has came to all levels of law enforcement. Maybe they own them or maybe they borrow them, the significance is negligible really. What matters is you can assume pretty much all but the most podunk PD's have UAV's.

- Again as noted before too many vehicles or people is a tip off. If a typically 4 person residence or agricultural operation always has 20 folks hanging out it is an indicator that something else is going on.

- Also too expensive of vehicles is another indicator of something illicit. This makes sense though is not something one might consider. A little farm or ranch that MAYBE brings in 25k a year should not  (unless obviously the owner has significant income from another legitimate source) have several fifty thousand dollar customized trucks or SUV's outside.

- Paper records are an interesting topic. They are hard to destroy, especially on short notice. Info on a micro SD card is a lot easier to destroy on short notice. Obviously one would want to use a dedicated laptop THAT NEVER GOES ONLINE for this. If you really want to go old school with ledgers and records some sort of a burn cabinet (a container that stores files with a method in place to immediately destroy them if need be) would be the order of the day.

- Being able to get your hands on a rotating supply of legitimately titled/ licensed vehicles is helpful if you wan to avoid prying eyes. A buddy with a used car lot would be a good friend to have.

- Compartmentalization. In terms of drug stuff (obviously the big border show) people who know how the drugs come in should not know where they go. Folks who know where the drugs are stored should not know where the cash is stored. None of those people should know where the drugs are delivered to. The same could be applied to a guerrilla force keeping direct action cells separated from support folks and everybody from each other on general principle.

- Information and intelligence gathering. Both sides run intel on each other. They study successes and failures to learn from them gathering as much info as possible along the way. The cartels know who the cops are and where they live. The cops know who the real players (south of the border) are and where they live. The cops cannot reach the bosses down in Mexico and the cartels largely do not bother (lethally) targeting cops. Cops are held at bay by moral constraints and the border. Cartels just don't bother to (as far as any legitimate systemic trends I have seen) target American cops. Some busts are just a cost of business and enough get through that it's not a huge deal anyway.

- Often guerrilla's have a criminal wing to support their operations. Sort of like we discussed earlier. As we have also mentioned drugs are a common financing source. Personally I find that rather distasteful. In places where the business is in growing/ refining or shipping drugs I can see it but in the US it's all use. At the end of the day, despite my legalize everything libertarian tendencies, drugs are a scourge to our communities that I would never be a part of. Smuggling is a good option especially in a restricted economically dysfunctional scenario. Decent cigarettes, booze, name brand candy, perfume, make- up and maybe guns/ ammo could bring a decent amount of cash in. Obviously for a G government money is free game, significant government supporters (media, key politicians, etc not some secretary) are also a fine option to either rob or extort.

- Border regions. This whole drug mess would not be what it is without a border that gives crooks a safe haven. Being able to have established logistics and homes in a secure place then operate, largely through illegal alien cut out's, over the border without significant risk of consequences is a large part of why cartels are successful, rich and powerful. Looking at history the same could be said of guerrilla organizations. Insurgencies that succeed without a border to rest and train behind are at best the exception to the rule.

Well that's about all I can think of on this topic. Hope it was interesting for somebody.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

From Around The Web

Arma Borealis is a blog by a couple who are regularly show up around here. Good stuff. Not at all related to the other links today. Just wanted to mention it.

Chicago: Americas gun free killing fields  

America Doesn't Have a Gun Problem, It Has a Gang Problem

5 Lessons from the Panic in 2012 at Teotwawki Blog. Have what you need on hand. Know where your shortages (a relative term) are. If supplies may become interrupted act without hesitation to fill said shortages.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Mexico urges U.S. to review gun laws after Colorado shooting- Got To Be Kidding Me

You can read the story here. Mexico's moral high ground when it comes to violence and the murder of innocent people is about that of Charley Sheen on the use of crack cocaine. To put this in perspective roughly 4X the amount of people killed in this unfortunate episode had their heads cut off not too far back in what was depressingly a fairly average week down in Ole Monterey.

That nation is engaged in a defacto civil war against massive drug cartels which are regularly fielding platoon sized elements which are engaging government forces with heavy weapons. These aren't some rinky dink gangbangers who have to steal an AR-15 from some citizen's house. They can just get guns from Mexican Army deserters or buy them on the world market.

Something about glass houses and stones comes to mind here.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Taking Over A Town: I Call Bull Spit

This recent article on survivalblog reminded me of something I have been meaning to write. There are always bunches of ideas floating around in my head and often it takes a post somewhere that touches on the topic to remind me that I had a strong opinion/ article idea.

I grew up on Westerns. When I was in my mid teens and we got non antenna TV Dad and I would often pass windy and rainy winter days by watching the Western Channel. With rare exceptions there were only a few different plots. One of those plots was taking over a town.

It basically goes like this a fairly large group of say 12-40 bad guys show up in a town and ride roughshod over the sheriff and push people around generally doing whatever they want, until the hero comes......The thing is that in real life a loner who has a questionable past but is pure of heart with a white hat who is lightning fast with a Colt .45 doesn't show up. Also more importantly towns wouldn't need one anyway. They can take care of themselves pretty well.

If you think of the bank robbers of that era they did not stick around in an isolated town with their speed of drawing and shooting a 6 gun securing their safety. They grabbed as much cash as they could quickly and rode out of town (hopefully for them) before getting shot to ribbons by farmers and store keepers with rifles and shotguns. Most of the reason people did this is that in the pre FDIC days, if a bank got robbed the money people kept in it was gone. Nowadays average people have little to no incentive to get involved in this sort of crime but if the money in the bank/ grain in the silo/ whatever was essential to the towns very survival people would not just stand by.

I remember in one book Louis Lamour gave his opinion on that plot. Basically he talked about how it would never work and was totally rediculous. There were just too many veterans of the Civil War and the Indian Wars and too many guns in the hands of the townspeople. Some things have not changed. It is often difficult to wrap ones head around how many guns are privately owned by every day, law abiding average Americans. Not everyone is a gun enthusiast with a Glock/Sig sticker on their car but Americans own a ridiculously awesome amount of guns.

This reminds me of my late Grandfather. He was a normal professional guy, pillar of the community, member of the Kiowas and all that stuff.  In their nice normal home in a mid sized town he had a snubby .38, a full sized .357mag, a couple shotguns, a couple .22's and a bolt action rifle. Also one of my old Scout Masters comes to mind. Somehow when I was a bit older we got to talking about worst case scenarios. This Vietnam vet and normal retired guy casually mentioned that he had 4 AK-47's and 10 cases of ammo for them stashed away, as well as enough rimfire for a lifetime of small game. Few veterans I know are without a firearm and most have some sort of a defensive pistol as well as a defensive rifle (mostly AR's in this generation), not to mention whatever sporting arms they own.

Once you start looking at how many people are veterans, cops, hunters or just plain angry rednecks there are a lot. Thanks to the almost 10 year long GWOT we have a lot of young veterans and those Nam era guys are still around, heck a few Korea and WWII vets are still alive and kicking.  There were simply way too many armed, trained and experienced individuals in even the smallest town of say 750 people a lethal proposition.

I can only speak with some measure of experience about the Pacific Northwest and the Deep South as I have lived there. In either of those places there is probably more firepower in 3 or 4 city blocks than any group of bikers/ raiders would want to deal with.  A couple of smart local cops or city officials who are either veterans themselves, which is pretty common or have the basic sense to listen to those with applicable military experience could easily make the juice not worth the squeeze.

People talk about how the gloves would be off when it comes to dangerous, violent criminals (alone or in groups) doing whatever they want. That is true but those folks pretty much do what they want now, if they followed the rules they would not be dangerous violent criminals. The real game changer in the criminal to citizen relationship would be that the gloves would be off for the citizens. The idea of a group of bikers storming into town on screaming Harleys and taking over is the stuff of bad 60's era movies. Citizens and cops have a pretty good idea who the scumbags are, they are just currently bound by rule of law. I can see law and order societies, sheriffs posses, healthy reserve police forces and maybe just strait up vigilantes becoming the norm if things get bad. If you add up the police force, the local gun club, the Elks lodge, angry rednecks and all the veterans in a town of 750-2,000 there are ample numbers to make some thugs seek a weaker target.

If things were bad enough that nationwide law and order were gone and biker gangs could act without any fear of legal consequences they would likely meet a volley of rifle fire about a quarter mile from town. A biker on the move with a rifle or submachine gun (being a crook means you can ignore firearms laws which is a plus) would be no match for a deer hunter in a fighting position with a scoped flat shooting rifle, especially at a couple hundred yards.

Personally I see this sort of roving biker gang being a real issue for travelers, isolated farms, ranches and retreats. Without a serious plan to get outside reinforcements a group of 6-15 adults would have a very hard time dealing with a group of 1-2 dozen armed hard core criminals, especially if a couple of them had even minimal military training. I would be a lot more worried about relatively small groups doing what amounted to home invasions on steroids than some mobile mega gang a la Mad Max.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Book Review- Gang Leader For A Day

When I worked at 711 I had kind of a weird habit. I would get home late (1-1:30AM) and have some beers while chilling out. That is pretty normal but here comes the weird part. Since there is nothing on at 4AM I repeatedly found myself flipping all the way through the channels and stopped on a CSPAN interview with an author that seemed interesting for whatever reason. One of these was Sudhir Venkatesh. This quiet academic Indian fellow talking about the time he spent with a crack gang was interesting. I thought nothing of it for a long time.

Several months after that incident I ended up reading Freakanomics. One chapter of that book looked in depth at the economic info derived from Sudhir's work with the gang. I found that very interesting and a couple weeks ago I saw this book while trying to spend a gift certificate and get something to read in the field.

I read it and enjoyed the book a lot. At a bit under 300 pages it is a quick easy read. It is probably the only book I can think of that Wifey and I have read and enjoyed. Though it is admittedly off center of the topic of this blog (and by default what its readers enjoy) it is just plain a good read. I would say there are some pretty leftist sentiments in the book but it is easy enough to ignore a sentence here or there and doesn't detract from the quality of the book.

It did leave me with some more thoughts on the underground economy:

As has been previously noted people will hide their income if there are significant motivators to do so. The higher the motivation the more people will probably hide income. As shown in the book people needed to have a low enough incomes to stay in their government housing. This made a strong incentive to have some income be off the books. This is not that different from a white collar guy who forgets to mention the money he made on a side job to stay in a lower % tax bracket.

In addition to people being driven to the underground they will also do what is necessary to get things done. If the normal channels don't work to address significant needs people have they will go outside of them quick fast and in a hurry. This is true for people getting stuff in their apartment fixed or getting things they want (drugs, sex, guns, booze, whatever).

This also brought home that most undergrounders are working for pretty small stakes. Of the people in the book who worked in some underground capacity most made at most a couple hundred bucks a month. There are probably HUNDREDS of people mowing lawns, walking dogs, cat sitting, doing small home repairs, etc and making small money for everyone who makes 100K under a fake SSN or some sort of other underground way.

This leaves me with a couple thoughts. First of all it is a lot easier to have one foot in the underground economy then to dive deep into it. It would be almost impossible to prove (assuming you earned it underground and aren't stupid) that you made 47,500 last year instead of the 38,263 that was reported by your primary employer. Heck even if you made 30-40% of your income underground it would be fairly hard to prove without serious examination. Maybe your primary business somehow doesn't ever receive payments in cash (because you don't like dealing with the haste) or you have some sort of side job that is underground.

I think underground goes hand in hand with bargaining and bartering. This is in part because it is usually small businesses and one man kind of operations. You can bargain with Jimbo the car guy but you can't bargain with Les Schwabb. Also they are more of the wheeling and dealing type which makes them more open. They can see how getting $200 work of firewood for a $100 job is a good deal even though they don't walk out with 20's in the wallet. If nothing else they can swap the wood for something they do need that costs $150.

I think underground activity tends to happen mostly in clumps. Very rarely (I imagine) do you find one undergrounder in a sea of legit businesses. Undergrounders are created by certain sets of conditions that lead groups (though not together or in a planned way) to functioning outside the system.

From an abstract perspective the most interesting thing to me about the underground economy is that it is such a group of odd fellows. Any time you have little old ladies who watch kids to supplement their retirement, HS girls who walk dogs, tradesmen, prostitutes and drug dealers that would be an odd luncheon. The only thing these folks have in common is that for reasons of financial interest or legal necessity (I would love to see a W-4 that says the guy made $120,453 from managing crack sales) they do not report at least some of their income for tax purposes.
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