Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

John Oliver vs. Cops Who Rob

“Since 9/11, under just one program police have taken two-and-a-half billion dollars in the course of over 61,000 seizures of cash alone, from people who . . . were not charged with a crime. That is the sort of behavior we laugh at other countries for, along with their accents and silly hats.”

So says a prime-time TV comedian who devotes more than 15 minutes of his monologue to exposing and critiquing the malignant practice of “civil forfeiture,” which lets cops grab and keep your cash just because it’s there.

You won’t find such an extended, mostly spot-on critique of civil forfeiture — bolstered by Q&A with the likes of Ezekiel Edwards and Scott Bullock — delivered by a “Tonight Show” or “Late Night” host. The credit goes to John Oliver (HBO’s “Last Week Tonight”), who finds plenty to satirize in the contradictions and silliness of “law enforcers” who function as thieves.

Much of the work is done for him. Oliver doesn’t have to try too hard, for example, to poke fun at the Funk Night raid, caught on video. The police seized 48 cars, contending, “simply driving vehicles to the location of an unlawful sale of alcohol was sufficient to seize a car.” Says Oliver: “Which means you might as well seize any car being driven by any teen on prom night.”

I’ve been more or less indifferent to the fate of John Oliver’s new HBO show; but now I say, ardently, “Live long and prosper!”

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor


  1. Not So Free says:

    Asset forfeiture is nothing less than theft under color of law.

  2. Rick says:

    The problem here is roughly 50% of all jobs now derive from some government source whether state local or Federal. Furthermore, consider the number of companies getting contracts whether office supplies, jets, bullets, construction, gasoline or anything else. So you see the difficulty of voting this out when half the people get a gov’t check and probably 20-25% of the rest depend on one of them for a contract to pay their employees, and therefore no incentive to upset his or her own status quo, what we have left is not enough angry citizens to get rid of status quo.

    Conservatives may have a good November. God knows, Obama has screwed upo enough things to cause a mass absence of his constituency and a decent turnout of serious haters, but how do you stop the new wave of Congressmen from becoming “owned” within 90 days?

  3. As long as one believes Republicans will be any different we will have the same problems. In fact Republicans have been just as supportive of Asset Forfeiture as Democrats. Its all about “Law and Order” and Republicans are big on that.

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