Bill Barr Is Literally Fake News
Does Bill Barr need to take the Person Woman Man Camera TV test? Has our mendacious attorney general lost his marbles, or is he just lying again? Spoiler alert: It is both! Barr's circuits are fried from 25 years of Fox, and also he's full of shit.
Three and a half years into Donald Trump's presidency, Commander Couch Potato has suddenly decided that crime in America's cities is an emergency requiring drastic federal response. As opposed to a global pandemic, which the states need to deal with on their own, because the federal government isn't a shipping clerk.
DOJ agents will surge into "Democrat run" cities and somehow solve crimes in communities they know nothing about. Local police haven't been able to reduce crime in cities they know like the back of their hands, but Bill Barr has that big government magic serum that will put things right in a jiffy.
As a resident of a city whose name is synonymous with an intractable murder rate, I am very curious to see what groundbreaking techniques the AG will bring to bear. Will they be as effective as his "surge" against "rioters" in Portland? Judging by early reports out of Kansas City, it will be exactly as successful as Portland.
Yesterday Barr announced the expansion of the Operation Legend Task Force to prevent violent crime, with expanded DOJ presence in Kansas City, Albuquerque, and Chicago.
"Unfortunately, in recent months we have seen a significant increase in violent crime in a number of cities," he tut-tutted. "This rise has been exacerbated by the recent movement to demonize police and de-fund police departments." There is literally no evidence that protests against police violence have fueled an increase in the murder rate, but keep that part in mind, since we're coming back to that in a minute. Just remember that Bill Barr is justifying this surge because, "In Kansas City, there have already been 100 homicides this year, a 40 percent increase from the same time last year."
After assurances that these were "standard anti-criminal activities" rather than "operations and tactical teams we use to defend against riots and mob violence" as in Portland, Barr went on to brag about the early success of the program.
"Just to give you an idea of what's possible, the FBI went in very strong into Kansas City and within two weeks we've had 200 arrests," he bragged. As if rounding up a bunch of brown kids and charging them with stupid shit would be a great metric of success, if it had actually happened. Which it did not.
Missouri officials scratched their heads at Barr's boast, since they only knew of one arrest during that period, a 20-year-old man charged on Monday with being an unlawful drug user in possession of firearms. There's no indication that the defendant was a criminal mastermind, and the agents appear to have picked him up by running the license plate to find that he was driving a stolen car, which isn't exactly a high-level investigative technique. If that's all they got after sending 200 additional agents into the area, well, it ain't much.
Which is perhaps why Barr felt the need to stretch the truth by 199 arrests. When Kansas City Star reporters asked what the hell the AG was talking about (support your local paper!), a DOJ official explained that the number included "arrests dating back to December 2019" when Operation Relentless Pursuit (which is now being folded into Operation Legend) launched in Kansas City, and also counted "both state and FBI arrests in joint operations."
So, just to make this totally clear, we need to spend millions of tax dollars sending federal agents into Kansas City to prevent the escalation of violence that occurred during the last period when federal agents were last surged into the city to prevent an escalation of violence. And you know this surge will be successful because they already managed to pick up 200 dudes, AHEM SORRY 1 dude, who was charged with gun possession, in an area of the country where everyone owns a gun.
Obviously, this is all Joe Biden's fault for demanding that police be defunded and replaced with drag queen story hour. Hope you're happy, Joe!
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.