Book Review: Radley Balko’s Rise of the Warrior Cop

Radley Balko, civil liberties crusader and blogger published a book called “Rise of the Warrior Cop.” Scott H. Greenfield shares some thoughts on Mr. Balko’s work –

Starting in the 1960’s, Radley takes us decade by decade down the road to
perdition.  As he wears his libertarian politics on his sleeve, it came as no
surprise that he gave the politics of law enforcement special scrutiny.  His
hatred of Richard Nixon for manipulating the silent majority’s hatred of hippies
and counterculture into the War on Drugs is palpable. On the other hand, there
is no reluctance to blame Bill Clinton for his deceitful abuse of the COPS
program, and its infusion of billions into the drug war a few decades
later.

Radley is a surprisingly good story teller, generally low key in
recounting tales of individual harm interspersed with broad influences that gave
rise to putting heavy weaponry into the hands of children.  There are times when
the narrative gets a bit breathless, trying hard to capture the confluence of
political deceit on the part of some and ignorance on the part of others.  Then
again, the alternative would be to simply call out the liars and morons for
their contribution to a state of affairs that served to put a naïve American
public at grave risk for such puny and transitory purposes as winning an
election.

Read the rest of Mr. Greenfield’s review here.


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