Mission Statement - De-Spinning the Pro-Taser Propaganda

Yeah right, 'Excited Delirium' my ass...

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The primary purpose of this blog is to provide an outlet for my observations and analysis about tasers, taser "associated" deaths, and the behaviour exhibited by the management, employees and minions of Taser International. In general, everything is linked back to external sources, often via previous posts on the same topic, so that readers can fact-check to their heart's content. This blog was started in late-2007 when Canadians were enraged by the taser death of Robert Dziekanski and four others in a short three month period. The cocky attitude exhibited by the Taser International spokespuppet, and his preposterous proposal that Mr. Dziekanski coincidentally died of "excited delirium" at the time of his taser-death, led me to choose the blog name I did and provides my motivation. I have zero financial ties to this issue.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Herding cats...

Canadian newspaper editorials have swung - for the most part - strongly against tasers and/or the abuse of tasers. That's a very good thing. But even with that, they're still getting their facts wrong.


Time for Fantino to start new career, By Michael Den Tandt [LINK]

Proponents of the weapons, Fantino and Kaye among them, cite numerous studies -- 150 is the number they posited this week -- that prove the device has never directly caused anyone to die. There is no reason to disbelieve this. The voltage and amperage of these devices are not sufficient to kill a person.


First of all - many of these studies (based on the abstracts I've seen) arguably provide some evidence that there is not a high risk of death. The studies, even overlooking all their experimental flaws (small sample size) and associated conflicts of interest (Ho), do not prove that the taser has never "directly" killed anyone. If you pay attention then you'll see that they don't even make this claim themselves. Only the less-educated fan-boys extrapolate from the "150 studies" and make hyperventilated claims that are absolutely not supportable. Taser International remains quiet while the idiot fan-boys mindlessly exaggerate the state of the science.

So there is a very good reason to disbelieve this - First, because Mr. Den Tandt has mixed-up the various claims; and second, because the relationship from these studies to the fundamental argument is tenuous at best. This has all be discussed in great detail in various previous posts. [LINK] [LINK]

Finally, the taser output voltage is 50,000 volts peak (and, yes, I'm perfectly familiar with the reason why high voltage by itself need not be necessarily dangerous, depending upon the current). And the X26 output current is 151 mA RMS. Note that Taser has expunged this RMS information from the later specification sheets. They now highlight the misleading "average" value of just 2mA.

Is this sufficient to kill a person (internal factors)?

Taser says "NEVER". Critics say SOMETIMES. So who's right?

Most people are now coming around to the obvious truth.

Even the RCMP...

Safety vs. Risk

It's very important to put some approximate numbers to the two sides of the taser risk of death issue so that we don't get wrapped around the axle with misleading nonsense.

This post will also shred the subtle '1/N' debating trick being used by Taser et al.

To be crystal clear, we're talking about internal risk factors (such as cardiac effects, for example). We're not talking about "falling down and banging heads", nor about "drowning in puddles."

Also, we're talking about inherent risks when the X26 darts hit the chest; not diluted by all the possible external safety factors (such as misses, or fake demos).

Taser et al claim that the risk of death is "one in millions", or even "one in ten millions", of deployments. [LINK] In other words, they claim that a taser-caused death is only a theoretic risk, but that it has never happened to date. Not once. Therefore they're not liable for any deaths so far. None. Ka-ching.

Informed critics look at the available data, adjust out the intentional dilution factors - such as the many FAKE demos and training sessions, where the darts are shot or placed on the volunteers back (NEVER on the chest). Curious little detail that observation is... [LINK] [LINK]

The raw data suggests that when X26 taser darts hit the subject's chest on the street, there is a moderate risk of strangely temporally-associated death at the low end of single digits. Maybe 2%, maybe 5%. Something in that range. [LINK][LINK][LINK]

These are the taser-associated deaths that Taser et al spend so much effort trying to explain away.

But there have been more and more examples where there are no reasonable alternate explanations for a given death, and the coroner is backed into a corner with Taser lawyers on one side, and the "Excited Delirium" excuse on the other.

Many of the Taser-R-Safe studies (such as the US NIJ study - another story in itself [LINK]) have only provided evidence that there is "not a high risk of death". Not a high risk.

Well duh. We're not talking about a high risk of death. [LINK] We're worried about those occasional people that are being killed and they did not deserve to die.

At least one expert in statistics has commented that many of Taser's studies were not designed to find low to moderate risks. Their sample size was simply too small to provide any evidence whatsoever about low to moderate risks. These studies should be lining the cages of parrots somewhere. [LINK]

Now - looking at these now-hopefully clarified claims, and examining the available information, it becomes perfectly clear that Taser's safety claims are off the mark by many orders of magnitude.

Their entire justification, training, sales, policies, everything - it is all based upon these claims of essentially-perfect safety.

If the claims are wrong - then the entire basis for the taser is fatally flawed.

The distinctions in the arguments are subtle, and many of the more rabid pro-taser fan-boys may lack the intellectual capacity to comprehend.


But it is critically important to understand that the real argument is not about the various ~97% versus 100.00000...% claims of "safety".

It's about the inverse...

It is about the huge, monstrous, incredibly large difference between a claimed "0.0000001%" risk of death, and the real world facts that seem to indicate a risk of death (when totally undiluted) of about 3%
(roughly).

It's a huge gap. Six or seven orders of magnitude...


[This post derived from comment posted here LINK]

It's back...

Serial Taser 1st-poster David E. Zuskin is back. [LINK]

Look at the list of studies posted at the above link by 'Dave Z.' and count the number of "J. Ho" - I see SIX of the seven studies listed!! Jeffrey Ho, M.D. is considered to be a Taser insider (he's a pro-taser "consultant").

This is exactly why the supposed "150 studies" should be treated with contempt. Many of these studies have been essentially manufactured by groups that include Taser insiders.

And Dr. Ho's been caught being less than forthcoming about his so-called science at a public hearing about taser safety. It's documented on YouTube [LINK]. Reportedly there was an attempt to have this video taken down, but the attempt to muzzle it failed.

There's certainly a pattern...

Spot the critical difference...

Sometimes you need to put things side-by-side to see them add-up:


Charles Momy, Canadian Police Ass. said: It is important for the public to understand that there is a risk associated with any 'use of force' by a police officer. A baton for example can cause bruising, contusions, and - in fact - even fractures. Pepper spray will cause irritation to the eyes and throat. These are both considered Intermediate Weapons - as is the, ah, Conducted Energy Weapon, also referred to, ah, as the taser. [transcribed from video of recent press conference / pro-taser propaganda session]



Charles Momy, with Tom Kaye standing at far left.

RCMP Commissioner said: "The RCMP's revised [Taser] policy underscores that there are risks associated with the deployment of the device and emphasizes that those risks include the risk of death, particularly for acutely agitated individuals." [LINK]


Summary of Intermediate Weapons - and their risks:
(Everything here is based on the exact quotes - copied above - from those police or policing organizations.)
  • Baton - bruising, contusions, fractures
  • Pepper spray - throat and eye irritation
  • Taser - skin puncturing wounds, burns, and, ah, oh yeah... ...death

One of these thing is not like the others, one of these things doesn't belong...


Risk of relatively minor injuries or irritation are not even on the same page as the risk of death. It's totally disgusting that some brainwashed idiots would lump them together in the same class of weapon.

There are three distinct classes of bad outcomes.
  • Injuries
  • Permanent Injuries
  • Death
If your loved-one is injured, that's bad. But hey - they'll heal.
If your loved-one is permanently injured, that's extremely bad.
If your loved-one is killed, that's infinitely worse than bad.


There's clearly enough evidence documented in these various police statements to move tasers out of the Intermediate Weapon class immediately and permanently.

This is a logical immediate first step.

And it follows directly from the exact statements quoted above.

Public Safety Minister Van Loan earns his badge

Public Safety Minister Peter Van Loan [27 Feb 2009] rejected calls for a moratorium on taser stun guns.

He actually said the original taser lie, "I believe that obviously shooting someone with a gun is going to be far more lethal than the use of a taser and as an alternative I think it's something that should be available to the police."
[LINK]


Okay Minister Van Loan - here's yer badge: [LINK]


How can we make this point any more clear?

CBC.ca - December 17, 2007: The RCMP, whose members have fired tasers more than 3,000 times since 2001, said it doesn't keep track of how often firearms are used across the country. [LINK]

3000 taser deployments in seven years (2001-2007) works out to at least 428 per year.

So if, in your imaginary la-la-land world where tasers replace guns, then this imaginary 'RCMP Without Tasers' would have been the biggest band of mass murderers in Canadian history. The RCMP would have single handedly doubled the total murder rate in Canada. Extend this idiot logic to the many other police forces in Canada and it would be a damn war zone.

IT SIMPLY DOES NOT COMPUTE.

Not to mention that CBC found that tasers don't actually reduce those very few police (gun) shootings in any case. [ibid] Your argument is double-dead.

In fact, another study found that police shootings were (in some cases) INCREASED immediately after the officers had been given their so-called Taser Training (brainwashing) as designed by Taser International. Which, by the way, strongly indicates that there is something seriously wrong with the training.


If the Minister of Public Safety is going to make this claim that tasers are somehow useful because they replace guns, then he needs to demonstrate exactly how he proposes to reduce their usage from more than a thousand times a year, to perhaps 12 or 20.

And then he needs to show us a simple chart that tracks the police shooting death rate going down coincident with the introduction of tasers into Canada.


Ball is in your court Mr. Minister. Show us the chart.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Evidence of the world's worst training?

This is incredible...


...Const. Bentley said Mr. Dziekanski's screaming and the look on his face suggested he was "fighting through it."

Mr. Rosenbloom suggested the look on Mr. Dziekanski face and his screaming could have been caused by the [2000x over-strength] extreme pain of the taser.

"It could be both. It depends how you interpret it," Const. Bentley replied. ...


Read more of the story here: [LINK]


The above exchange is simply amazing.

Taser Training is this? (written in 'TASER BASIC' - sarcasm!):

05: REM Tasering Algorithm - by Taser International
10: TASER the_subject

20: IF face_contorted THEN GOTO 10
30: INTERRUPT IF face_blue
40: PRINT "ERROR - impossible condition, no solution. ";
50: GOTO 40



No wonder people get tasered five times in a row.

The 'thinking' here is exactly the same as the world's stupidest algorithm: Moth+Light.


Root causes - false claims of safety, defective training, general stupidity all around.


Sometimes things are so bad that they simply have to get better.

In this case, the pendulum has been pushed so far and so hard into the insane world of taser-craziness, that when it inevitably springs back towards the normal world - it may do so in a manner that disappoints taser fan-boys everywhere.

Let's hope so.

Taser - Chest - Heart stopped - CPR

AKRON, Ohio (February 24, 2009) — Jail officials in Ohio say they used a stun gun on an inmate who attacked them, stopping his heart. A medical team performed CPR on 21-year-old Gregory Dillard and revived him Saturday night. He remains in critical condition at an Akron hospital. Officials say Dillard was shocked with a stun gun to the chest as he was being released from jail in Summit County. He had been arrested on drug [marijuana possession] and assault charges and posted bond. Sheriff Drew Alexander says he has stopped using the devices until the stun gun is inspected for defects. [LINK]

See also [LINK] [LINK] [LINK] [LINK]


The Taser Emergency Explain-Away Team is probably rushing to the scene laden with brochures and pamphlets explaining all about Excited Delirium and the little-known Spontaneous Death Syndrome. And don't forget the Purely-Coincidental Heart Stoppage Near-Death Syndrome.

Seriously, I'll betcha that the Taser PR machine goes all silent on us regarding this one...

Wishful thinking by Owen Sound Police Chief Tom Kaye

Chief Kaye makes some claims that fail to stand-up to a trivial degree of skeptical scrutiny:


Owen Sound Police Chief Tom Kaye, who also serves as Vice-President of the Canadian Association of Police Chiefs, [and has been loudly all pro-taser fan-boy recently, which is the reason that we're taking on his statements and claims] ...says the report on taser use by the Owen Sound Police Services shows that there is a role for these devices by officers. He says the report is an example that tasers reduce the number of injuries and save lives. [LINK]


Owen Sound police actually used their tasers twice in 2008. They had a field-failure rate of 50% - one taser dart missed - which they amusingly blamed on the World's Fastest Suspect...

...the suspect managed to partially dodge one of the two taser barbs, rendering the strike incomplete. [LINK]

Do the math: taser dart velocity is supposedly 55 meters per second, maximum range is 10.6 meters, this works out to a required reaction time of less than one-fifth of a second (193ms), and that's maximum - assuming maximum range. More realistically (at mid-range) - it implies a reaction time of about 0.1 seconds, including the time for the subject to move his body mass sideways. What next - subjects dodging bullets a la The Matrix?

Beep beep beep beep beep
Excuse me a second - I have to reset my BS Detector...
...Okay.


So tasers save lives in Owen Sound, eh?

Beep beep beep beep beep
Damn, my BS Detector has gone off - again!
...Okay.


Kaye is using the plural version of the claim - which could be interpreted as him claiming that the taser has saved multiple lives in Owen Sound during 2008. I'll be very generous and we'll just say that it's maybe one, or maybe two, okay? Puh!

Okay then - let's do the math.

The population of the 'city' of Owen Sound is something like 25,000 [LINK]. I have nothing against small towns - love 'em. But this small-town population is about 0.08% of the population of Canada. So if police in Canada - hopefully lawfully, reasonably and justifiably - kill about 12 people per year with their guns, then the 'expected share' for Owen Sound, in proportion to their minuscule population, is about one person every 100 years.

Expect about one fatal police shooting every century in Owen Sound. Roughly.


In other words, if the police in Owen Sound were shooting to kill even as few as two people in a single year, or perhaps about three (*) within a period of several years, then Statistics 101 would recommend an investigation into What the hell is going on in Owen Sound?

(* Once is Happenstance, twice is Coincidence, three times is Enemy Action.)


Thankfully, there is no evidence that the police in Owen Sound are on this sort of murderous rampage.

Which means the taser is a "solution" to a "problem" ("saving lives") that exists only in the minds of those that have been brainwashed by Taser International.


Read that again: the taser is a "solution" to a "problem" ("saving lives") that exists only in the minds of those that have been brainwashed by Taser International.


So it's not really a 'solution' after all.


Which leaves only the very real taser problems which we have so carefully documented below.

Such as - after using tasers in Owen Sound several times per year for one hundred years, then you'll almost certainly be looking at some "taser-associated" deaths.

Not to mention the issue of them often being used for torture (a.k.a. excessive 'pain compliance' as described so clearly in CC 269.1, a.k.a. Touch Torture mode, a.k.a. "Drive Stun" mode, a.k.a. 'replacing the glowing end of a lit cigarette' mode).


Is anyone out there paying any attention to our publicly-paid police chiefs spouting off this sort of misleading pro-taser propaganda?

And why are the news outlets soaking it up without even engaging a brain cell to think about it for a few seconds to see if it computes?


So tasers save lives?

Yeah - but only in your dreams sunshine.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Belleville Intelligencer drags out stale argument

For those of us that wish to remain more-or-less anonymous, it's almost impossible to get formal Letters to the Editor published. It's because the newspaper editors typically want to know the full name and address of whoever it is that wrote the letter, before they'll even consider publishing it. That's fine - I understand. But it ain't gonna happen. Have you seen the stuff the pro-taser fan-boys have been accused of doing to those that dare to criticize tasers? Crikey... So I'll put a copy of my letter here so that (at least some) people will see it and understand the point. And we'll see if the editor in this case will admit his fundamental error, or not.


The Belleville Intelligencer (Bellville, Ontario) had an editorial that included the oldest, most stale, and dumbest of all the pro-taser arguments. Yes, that's right. They dragged out the old "tasers replace guns" argument. Here's the quote:

"[tasers]...are still many, many times safer than guns. Given a choice between a officer feeling the need to draw his gun and that same officer instead being able to draw his taser, we will take the taser every time." [LINK]


My 'Letter to the Editor', which was submitted but is not likely to be published, is this:


To the Editor of the Belleville Intelligencer:


Tasers replace guns? Puhleeze...

This is the most stale of all the many examples of misleading pro-taser propaganda. Even Taser International has been forced to walk away from this stinker.

The facts are that tasers are used roughly ONE HUNDRED times more often than police have historically (and generally-acceptably) used their guns. Of course this ratio will vary with locality and over time, but it's a perfectly fair approximation.

If the police had been shooting people at the same rate that they're tasering left, right and center - then they'd have become the biggest band of mass murderers in Canadian history.

And CBC found that police gun-fire was not reduced by tasers anyway.

So the argument that tasers are better than guns is left in a smoldering pile.

And by the way, violent deaths of Canadian police have increased by a 4-to-1 ratio in the five year periods before (4) and after (17) 2003, which is roughly when tasers started to become more common in Canada.

...

And I highly recommend that you bring yourself up-to-date with the taser issue before spouting the absolutely oldest pro-taser lie.

Every claim made in this message is fully backed-up, with links to sources for fact checking, on my blog.

www.Excited-Delirium.com (don't forget the dash!)

See also the Truth...Not Tasers blog. Google it, or follow the link found on my blog.

Now, after all this, if you still believe that tasers replace guns, well, here's yer badge:

http://tinyurl.com/TaserBadge

(Sorry, but it's become a running joke.)

Please correct your editorial. It's about 99% wrong.

Mother Jones: Taser's Delirium Defense

"How lawyers used junk science to explain away stun-gun deaths." [LINK]

When Mother Jones says that you've been bad, then - face facts - you've been bad.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Taser fan-boys spout Taser-provided propaganda

...The Canadian Police Association and the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police held a news conference Tuesday to outline a 13-point position paper on conducted energy weapons. ...Police alluded to multiple studies that disputed Tasers’ capacity to kill but couldn’t name a single research paper they’d consulted when pressed repeatedly for specific citations... They said 150 studies have failed to find a link between tasers and deaths. However, they repeatedly refused to say which studies they had consulted before developing their Taser policy. "Do your own homework," Fantino shot back when asked to cite a single study. "There’s 150 studies worldwide."... [LINK]

"There's 150 studies worldwide" is a registered trademark of Taser International (*).

(* Not really. But it originates from them.)

These guys are spouting Taser-provided propaganda and taking it at face value. They should try some independent thinking for a change. It may require a moratorium to capture their attention and have their minds released from Taser's influence. There may be no other approach that will have the requried effect.


...acknowledged that tasers had been used too often. And they conceded that the weapon has been used in cases where suspects presented no threat. "Everybody is basically coming around to the point where they’ve agreed that there has to be some active resistance on people’s behalf," said Tom Kaye, vice-president of the association of police chiefs. "It’s got to be some kind of assaultive, combative behaviour. There’s got to be some threat to the officers or some threat to the public. . . . I’m not saying that’s always been the case." He added that the weapon may have been used to force peaceful suspects to comply — and that such use by officers was "not correct."

Yeah - no sh_t Einstein. You numbskulls have been TORTURING hundreds (thousands?) of victims for the past several years, which should get you up to 14 years in the slammer.

So when did you figure this out? Yesterday? Duh!


...the associations said Elliott’s observation that tasers can kill had been twisted out of context.

Twisted? Here are the exact words:

"The RCMP's revised [Taser] policy underscores that there are risks associated with the deployment of the device and emphasizes that those risks include the risk of death, particularly for acutely agitated individuals." [LINK]

Yeah, I can see how that might be misinterpreted.

What he meant to say was "...risk of bad breath..."

Yeah... Halitosis. That's what he was saying...

Harvesting vital organs from newborn babies

Disgusting title - sorry. Tasers are a disgusting issue. Allow me to explain...


There's a headline streaming on Google News today that says something like: "tasers help more than they harm." The link is already broken, so I won't bother including it here.


This is very similar to when Taser Chairman Tom Smith admitting that "tasers save 70 lives for every life lost."

Yeah, Smith-for-brains actually admitted that. See post 12 May 2008: Taser Blinks [LINK]

Keep in mind that he and many others have claimed that a life is saved pretty much every time a taser is used. You do the math.


Here's the fundamental problem with this sort of approach. Taken to its logical conclusion, we'd be harvesting vital organs out of newborn babies. Each baby could probably supply enough material to save many lives. So, using this sort of a purely accounting trade-off, we should be harvesting vital organs from fresh babies right now. One baby could save many lives (too bad about the baby).


Obviously - there are some moral and ethical issues with taking a life because someone thinks that we're ahead on the deal.

But this moral and ethical quandary was sorted out many centuries ago...

Do Unto Others...

And

First - do no harm.

And

You're not allowed to go around killing people!!
(
Thou shalt not... and all the regional variations.)

It's been resolved a long long time ago. Duh!


Translate this basic moral premise to the taser and it is thus:

Yeah nifty turtleneck kids, call us back via your Communicator when you've dialed-back the output from your damn stupid Phaser to the lower end of the Stun setting, as opposed to being set too damn close to the Kill setting. Then we'll talk about lifting the moratorium.

This isn't rocket science folks.


And if you're still confused by the relationship of taser safety to replacing guns...

Well, here's yer badge: [LINK]

Criminal Code of Canada 269.1 - Torture

269.1 (1) Every [Peace Officer] who inflicts [severe pain] on any other person is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding fourteen years.

I've rolled up some definitions for your convenience. Please refer to [LINK] for complete details.

The only possible exception listed is as a 'lawful sanction' - but remember, sanctions are the domain of the courts.

It really seems pretty clear that using a taser for 2000-to-1 over-strength pain compliance is strictly illegal.


In other words, (lawful) force is a noun, not a verb.


This is why using the glowing end of a lit cigarette to encourage compliance is illegal. Tasers used in Touch Torture mode are exactly the same.


Evidence suggests that tasers KILL police officers (*)

(* Note - Post title is dripping with sarcasm...)

An opinion (which can be traced to having originated from Taser International):
(it's Taser's latest claim - their previous claims have all been shredded too.)

Charles Momy, president of Canadian Police Association said, "...[tasers] certainly enhance ...officer safety." [LINK]


The facts:
Officer deaths in Canada are UP (by 4x) coincident with the spread of tasers. This is a fact.

Tasers really started to become more common beginning in about 2003. Violent deaths of police officers in Canada (excluding accidents) has skyrocketed by a four-to-one ratio starting exactly then. See graphic below. Back-up and source links can be found here [LINK] and here [LINK].



The evidence, taken at face value, suggests that tasers are actually killing police officers in Canada. Of course that's not true, but it's no sillier a claim than Taser's.

(By the way - taser-associated deaths in North America also jumped to a higher rate begining in 2003 coincident with the introduction of the X26 taser. And studies of Coroners' Reports indicate that 27% to 37% of those taser-associated deaths had some link to the taser usage.)

What has obviously helped to save police lives (I'm being serious here) is the vast increase in public scrutiny starting in late-2007, when four or five people in Canada died after being tasered. Police deaths have gone to zero, and stayed there all through 2008 (!), within a few weeks of Mr. Dziekanski's killing.

Something changed and changed hard within the policing community. Maybe this was when police in Canada first began to grasp that they've been sold a bill of goods on taser safety. And so they naturally started using more old-school de-escalation techniques and using less tasers. Taser usage statistics showed a sudden sharp decline in many localities, and officials couldn't explain it.

I can explain it. Four or five people in Canada dropping dead after being tasered during late-2007 can make an impression.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

"Combative behaviour"

The [Taser fan-boy] associations say the weapon should only be used if there's a threat to the police officer or a threat to the public. Chief Kaye said, "There has to be some active resistance on people's behalf. It's got to be some kind of assaultive, combative behaviour...." [LINK]

Yeah, "combative behaviour" ... such as (for example) the world famous 'combative stance', as so ably demonstrated below by RCMP Const. Gerry Rundel.

Chief Kaye didn't get the memo...

In the wrong we have...

"We reiterate that to date, there is no evidence, either scientific or medical, that a conducted-energy weapon has been the direct cause of death anywhere, at any time, on any person," Chief Tom Kaye, vice-president of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, said in a news conference in Ottawa. [LINK]

And in the right we have...

...Dr. Randolph Williams, ruled in June that Pikes' death was a homicide. Williams said he consulted with two other coroners, and both agreed that Pikes died of cardiac arrest caused by the taser shocks. [LINK] [LINK]
(please excuse the large colourful font)


This one example clearly contradicts Chief Kaye assertion.

Which makes him WRONG.


And that's just one example of many dozen where links have been established between taser use and death. Studies have shown that between 27% and 37% of all taser-associated deaths were linked by the coroner to the use of the taser. Taser fan-boys will continue to deny the link, but it is firmly established.

Even Taser International has slyly retreated from the position taken by Kaye. Taser International used to make that claim of no link with a world-wide coverage, but they're since been forced by the inevitable build-up of the statistics of failure to retreat to an "only in Canada" claim. [LINK] [LINK]

I guess Kaye didn't get the memo.

Note to Investors

...This press release contains widely optimistic statements and is based on selective memory.

But we're really happy that we're only referring to events up to end-of year, because it's gone all pear-shaped (not good) since then. ...


[This is a mockery of their 4th Qtr Press Release which actually did display the characteristics that I've attributed to it. I have very intentionally not provided a link.]

Taser Usage Statistics

According to some information I've seen, researchers or ordinary folks in Australia and the UK are looking for taser usage statistics.

This blog (Excited-Delirium.com, don't forget the dash) specializes in shredding the many sad and pathetic pro-taser arguments. Along the way I've discovered, and reported on, some very intriguing facts. There are too many examples to list here, but you can start with this 2008 year-end summary [LINK].

The Truth...Not Tasers blog [LINK] captures the taser news, provides a unique perspective, and documents the List of the Dead [LINK].

The It all goes here blog [LINK] covers a wide ranch of aspects and has captured some excellent findings.

For some Taser Usage Statistics, one of the few public databases is linked from here [LINK].

There is a lot of information - so make yourself comfortable...

Comments on CBC: 97% Against

I read through about a hundred or more of the 300+ comments at CBC.ca [LINK] on this "combative stance" news story (see previous post).

There were only a few half-hearted comments in support of the police with respect to this incident.

In other words, the comments are running about 97% STRONGLY AGAINST the police officers' actions in the killing of Mr. Dziekanski.

Politicians should take note - the people are providing you with an excellent insight into their feelings about this tasers-in-Canada fiasco.

"combative stance"

CBC - Const. Gerry Rundel demonstrates the gesture made by Robert Dziekanski moments before he was stunned with a taser. [LINK]

Monday, February 23, 2009

He might as well have used a cigarette...

Some people might not have believed my previously-mentioned claim that tasers can cause minor burns.

And yet they do (see report below). Thereby raising the duh-obvious but critically-important question: Why not just use the glowing end of a lit cigarette? [LINK]


Sydney police officer shoots himself with taser [LINK]

February 22, 2009 (Australian Associated Press)

A police officer has been treated for burns after shooting himself with a taser stun gun. Police were called to a nightclub brawl on Elizabeth Street, near Martin Place in Sydney, at about 3.40am last night. They say a taser stun gun was used in an attempt to subdue a 27-year-old man after he resisted arrest. The officer tasered himself in the struggle, injuring his arm. The policeman was treated at the scene by paramedics before being taken to St Vincent's Hospital where he received treatment for minor burns...


So - as I have already asked [LINK] - what's the flipping difference (ethical? moral? legal?) between using a taser, and using the glowing end of a lit cigarette, for pain compliance?

No replies to date - because there's no difference.

If one is unethical, then so is the other.
If one is immoral, then so is the other.
If one is illegal, then so is the other.
If one is evil, then so is the other.


And could these flesh burns (!!!!!) have anything to do with the fact that the taser was designed to incapacitate, and the single-setting output has been designed for that purpose. Which makes it some 2000 times stronger than required to cause intense pain. [LINK]

Note - the output is not changed from one mode to the other (incapacitation mode vs. Touch Torture mode). If anything, skipping the long wires is likely to make the net output higher (but perhaps less lethal if and only if the electrical discharge is not directed into the victim's chest).

Personally, I would say that the 2000x over-strength output for the Touch Torture mode (when compared to what might actually be required for pain compliance) is a huge design flaw.

Especially when Satan's little toy starts to burn flesh.

Who authorized this insanity?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

"Tasers replace guns"? Well, here's yer badge.

Many Taser fan-boys still hold the opinion that tasers somehow replace guns, and therefore the issue of safety is somehow a non-issue.

And I've stated my observation (with supporting facts) that such opinions are 'a badge of ignorance'.

Well - for those that might need it - here's yer badge...





Tiny URL = http://tinyurl.com/TaserBadge [LINK]

"No links, no studies, no findings" = BS

The above sort of "claims" are utter bull. They're either based on pure unabashed ignorance, or they're simply outright bald-faced lies.


Taser Use in Restraint-Related Deaths [LINK]

Use of a Taser was considered a potential or contributory cause of death in 27% [of the autopsy reports reviewed during this study].


37% [LINK] or 27%. With all the downward pressure on coroners and medical examiners over the years, these sorts of numbers can only be low ball ratios.

But this sort of fraction (about a third, as it stands today) can almost certainly be extrapolated to the entire List Of The Dead [LINK]. Adds up to 130 to 150 or so. With today's low ball fraction. These numbers can only increase wth time. Yikes.

And don't forget the fundamental unfairness of people that were not actual threats are being killed during an arrest. Given the ratio of overuse, most people that have had their death hastened by the taser did not deserve to die. Ethics folks - ethics.


By the way, this is the same study that noted that Cardiovascular disease was found in 54.1%. This rate is about eleven times (11x) higher than the population, which is an inconvenient fact that Taser needs to try to explain away. They claim there is no effect of the taser upon the heart. This 11x fact pokes a little hole in that claim, as it appears that the taser can selectively kill people if their hearts are not in perfect shape. Thus tasers carry "a risk of death" (RCMP, 2009).

Read more of this little annoying 11x fact right here: [LINK]. It's all explained in excruciating detail. And their chosen escape route (that the victims preselect themselves and therefore tend to have bad hearts) is totally shredded using some basic facts and very simple math.


Face facts - Taser International is screwed. And the sooner this fiasco runs its course, the better for all concerned. Can someone in Parliament please press the fast-forward button and get a moratorium passed ASAP? Please?

RCMP has admitted that tasers carry a risk of death and the manufacturer still will not agree. Until they do, and people like Chief Kaye are thereby forced to see the light, you must assume control.

This slow-drip of truth is just excrutiating.

An old Tuttle-quote worth highlighting...

February 21, 2003 [LINK]

Dear Editor, ...As for electrical output causing death, our M26 output of 0.162 amps is less 1/100th the dangerous level of electrical energy for cardiac tissue. ... Sincerely, Stephen Tuttle, Director of Government Affairs [Taser International]

Steve Tuttle is the present-day Spokespuppet for Taser International.

The 1999-era M26 output of "0.162 amps" can also be written as 162 milliamps.

This is the RMS value - not the misleading average value now highlighted by Taser.

Anyone that knows anything about electricity would know that 162 milliamps is enough to raise some major alarms bells regarding safety.

The electrical industry uses RMS measurements because they know that averages can be misleading. Measurements marked 'average' are a red flag to experienced electrical engineers. Only noobies, or people with something to hide, would use averages on a complex waveform.

It's worth keeping this information in the forefront to counteract Taser's not-so-subtle campaign to shift the world's attention away from the RMS value to the misleading average value.


Next you need to mix this detail into the newer 2003-era X26. It's output current is a bit less at about 150 mA RMS. But the X26 walked away from the previously-claimed M26 safety factors of high frequency and very low duty cycle.

See [LINK] for more details of this smoking gun of failure.

Update to a previous post...

A previous post entitled Are tasers really required? [LINK] was so poorly worded that my point was not clear. Thanks very much to reader Michael for submitting a very good comment to point this out. I've rewritten the offending post from top to bottom to make it crystal clear.

The point, hopefully now perfectly clear, is that there are taser-use and non-taser-use incidents out there that can be compared and contrasted.

I've also 'modernized' (embedded YouTube) another previous post [LINK] linked from the above updated post. I highly recommend it as it is highly revealing of the main point. The contrast between the before and the after (tasers, taser propaganda, taser 'training') is absolutely striking. The day-to-day evil wrought by tasers is ultra clear.


PS: For those that still think that there's any debate left in the Utah 'speeding' motorist incident, please note that he was given a $40k cheque. [LINK] Officially, the $40k settlement is not an admission nor an apology. Unofficially, it's about twenty-thousand admissions and about twenty-thousand apologies.

'Tasers make officers safer', eh?

As a follow-up to a previous post entitled 'The dangerous world of law enforcement...' [LINK]

Here is a graph of the same data.

(Click on graph for a larger and clearer image. Click on back to return here.)

Clearly, in Canada, having more tasers (starting around 2003 with the introduction of the X26) is coincident with a step function increase in the annual rate of police officers being killed in the line-of-duty (excluding accidents).

And the sharp drop-off to zero in 2008 is strangely coincident with the increased public scrutiny subsequent to the killing of Mr. Dziekanski and several others in late-2007.

So do tasers really help to make Canadian police officers safer?

Autism ? Taser the child 'til unconscious...

"...the 14-year-old [autistic] boy became verbally abusive... ...According to the complaint, Carmel police officer Matthew Kinkade arrived and responded to the teen's outbursts by grabbing him and forcing him to a bench in the school. Unable to control the child, he then tried handcuffing him, then drew his taser, shocking the boy twice until he lost consciousness." [LINK]

The only single word that I can think of to describe this incident is: Satanic.

It's that evil.


Update November 2009: In case your search landed here, see also "The Feds are on the case of the 10-year-old little girl" [LINK]

Saturday, February 21, 2009

RCMP: "...[taser] risks include the risk of death..."

Here are the exact words:

"The RCMP's revised [Taser] policy underscores that there are risks associated with the deployment of the device and emphasizes that those risks include the risk of death, particularly for acutely agitated individuals." [LINK]


Make sure that you parse the whole sentence correctly.

The risks [always] 'include the risk of death'.

And if the individual happens to be acutely agitated, then the risk of death is even higher.


Considering that tasers are very often used on acutely agitated individuals, it means that the actual risk (weighted by actual application frequency) is often at the higher level.


Now - think about how tasers are used on individuals that did nothing to deserve having a risk of death imposed upon them. Not really fair. Not really moral. Not really ethical. Not really legal to have a street-level death lottery happening on the streets of Canada, or any other civilized state.


As has been so clearly pointed out on the Truth...Not Tasers blogs, it's not the (rare) success stories that count. It's the utterly evil failures. And if you're going to play a pure numbers game, then harvesting baby organs is the next evil step in such perverted logic.

And the taser numbers aren't very good anyway (keep in mind the 100:1 overusage ratio compared to guns).

Look what we have to try to deal with...

Owen Sound Police Chief Tom Kaye, also vice president of the Canadian Association of Police Chiefs said... [LINK]

"
Nobody, anywhere has ever been able to link one of these devices to anybody dying, ever."


Attention Chief Kaye - YOU'RE WRONG!!!!!!! Utter bullocks. Wrong wrong wrong.

Example, Robert Dziekanski's death was 'contributed to' by the taser. I'd call 'contributing to' a death as a good example of a 'link'.

Also, see 'De-spinning the spin' at the top right of this blog. There's even a 'cause' in there.

Coroners have linked tasers and death at least 50 times. This number would only be higher, except for Taser's long-running campaign. They're tried to shift blame to other purported causes. Also, even when a taser has been found to 'contribute to' a death, it leaves little physical clues. There's a fundamental 'proof issue'. And Taser will sue coroners over their findings. Add it all up, and the count of 50 can only be a low-ball number.

FACT: In 37 of the 98 autopsy reports plus two inquest transcripts reviewed by Amnesty International, medical examiners listed the use of a Taser as a cause or contributory factor in the death. Medical examiners or coroners reportedly made similar findings in at least 13 other cases where Amnesty International did not have the autopsy reports. [LINK]

That's running 37% of the 100 cases studied. Extrapolate it and you're looking at 37% of about 400, or approaching 150. But even 50 is much greater than zero.

Hey Kaye - would you like to submit a comment on your definition of the word 'link' and how it relates to tasers 'contributing to' numerous deaths? You can send it in and I will publish it (6 column-inches max). But then I will shred your pathetic 'logic'.

Care to take-up the challenge?


Kaye is also the chairman of the committee that has written Tuesday's report, has denounced the "hysteria" against taser use and promised the document will educate the public about the value of the guns.

Chief Kaye - take your report, which is probably based on utter misinformation as exemplified by your nonsensical statement, and shove it... ...ah, sorry... ...shove it, sir.


Personal note - it does get a bit frustrating when decision makers such as Kaye are so completely ill-informed and still operating under the influence of Taser's propaganda. This sort of top-level response from the CAPC is why the Parliament should seriously consider a moratorium. It may be the only way to reassert authority over such out-of-control law enforcement attitudes. Please keep in mind the fact that there has never been a high rate of police gun-play in Canada (it's the sharp-end of a fact that pops many a fear-mongering balloon).

Updated 21 Feb 2009 to provide additional references for Chief Kaye to respond to.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Are tasers really required?

[Updated 22 Feb 2009 - to clarify the point. Sorry for not making my sarcasm more clear.]

A woman missed her flight at Hong Kong International Airport. She goes a bit crazy and starts banging on things.

In comparison to the approach used at Vancouver airport when Mr. Dziekanski was killed, it appears that the nice folks at HKIA don't considered that a taser is a fundamental prerequisite to ending this sort of situation.



I find the contrast between this video and the Dziekanski incident to be striking and revealing. It's very much like the contrast in the two incidents mentioned at this previous post [LINK].

Both of these examples clearly indicate that the first weapon to reach for is not the taser, it's deescalation. Talk to them, calm them down. And you can even still arrest them later if you really feel the urge. Safer for all concerned.

One down, ~ 97% (+/-) to go...

An Edmonton police officer has been found guilty under the Police Act of using a taser without lawful cause. Const. Andrew Hoglund used his taser on a man being arrested by two other constables outside a city bar on Sept. 4, 2004. City police Supt. Mark Logar, "The taser was not appropriate or necessary." [LINK]

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

You're either critical of tasers, or you're ill-informed

A newspaper in Halifax, the Chronicle Herald, published an editorial entitled:

Other police should follow RCMP taser policy [LINK]


As is normal, there were some comments from readers posted to the on-line edition. Some of these comments were the usual, knee-jerk 'law-and-order über alles', ill-informed, pro-taser nonsense. I was forced to respond with facts and figures.


#1 - "I would rather a taser be used on me than a .45 or whatever!"

This sort of statement is an indicator that you've simply not been paying attention.

Fact - tasers are used (roughly) one-hundred times as often as guns ever were. For example, Winnipeg police taser about 75 people per year. RCMP have tasered thousands over recent years. These sorts of usage rates are about two orders of magnitude (~100x) higher than the historical rate of police gunfire. Not to mention all the taser news about children and old men in their hospital beds.

Now, do you still think that tasers have ANYTHING to do with replacing guns?

It's nothing but a stale lie that tasers have anything to do with replacing guns.

And CBC noted that police gun fire statistics were unchanged with the introduction of tasers anyway.

...



#2 - "...tasers....they leave their wives and children home with the worry that they may come home injured, or not at all..."

The most common taser, the X26, was introduced to the market in 2003. This roughly marks the point where tasers started to become fairly common.

According to the data I've seen, in the five years preceding this point, there were four (4) officers killed in the line of duty (excluding accidents) in Canada. In the five years after this point, there have been seventeen (17)! [LINK]

So if tasers make police officers safer, then they're hiding this purported benefit extremely well.


Also, during the ten years of data that I looked at, 70% (49/70) of all officer deaths were related to accidents (not violence).

Inexplicably, there were 8 officers killed in aircraft accidents during those ten years - obviously that's a topic worthy of further investigation.



So - is this what's left of the public support for taser. Just those taser-newbies that wander into the taser issue all innocent, fresh-faced and completely ill-informed?


And for bonus point: [LINK]

Sunday, February 15, 2009

And so the mockery begins...

The Chronicle Herald newspaper in Halifax - Bruce MacKinnon's Editorial Cartoon.

The direct link to the cartoon has, as expected, broken. See here... [Truth...Not Tasers]


Description:

Someone is hiding behind a large rock which is marked "Taser International". Whoever is behind the rock (we see only an arm) is holding up a man dressed in a suit above the rock. The caption reads, "BACK OFF!! I have lawyers and I'm not afraid to use them..!!"

Watts the difference?

Jack Cover has died, age 88.

He invented the taser, but that doesn't make him evil.

In fact, he had the best of intentions...

...Cover began to develop the taser in the 1960s in response to a rash of airplane hijackings. Sky marshals carrying sidearms began riding on commercial airliners to discourage hijackers, but Cover saw the risk inherent in the situation. If a bullet missed the hijacker and pierced the fuselage instead, the plane could go down. [LINK]

There are several flaws in the above statements. First of all, the chances of a single stray bullet (or even five) taking down an entire airplane are actually fantastically remote. The concept of this risk originates somewhere between ignorance and insanity. Secondly, back in the 1960s, most hijackers wanted cash, or a one-way trip to Cuba, as opposed to martyrdom. So they'd be just as discouraged by a perceived risk of a plane crash as they would be by an accurate bullet. So the entire initial justification for tasers (as described above) is doubly-flawed from the get-go.


Cover's initial device emitted just 7 watts of electrical energy. A later model emitted 11 watts.

What Cover had invented was a device to be used against clear-cut threats like hijackers ...used instead of a gun ...and with the output power set to 11 watts.


Fast forward to the post-2003 world where Cover is effectively out of the picture (suffering from Alzheimer's disease) and others had taken over.

Tasers are now at least 26 watts (almost 2.5 times as powerful as Cover's version). And some CBC-sponsored testing has found that some are even above that specification. And the X26 taser output waveform contains significant low frequency energy, perhaps unintended.


...have linked the device to scores of deaths in recent years... [ibid]


It seems like a case where the bell curve of the population's susceptibility is being encroached upon by the bell curve of overly-aggressive (and possible flawed) design, poor quality control, and vast overuse.

Tasers are not being used against hijackers, and they're not very often being used in place of a gun. They're often being used against children and other completely harmless subjects.

And they're most-often being used as a replacement for the glowing end of a lit cigarette [LINK] for an inexplicably-authorized (!) insane and ill-conceived form of pain compliance.


There's no question that the original promises of Cover's invention have been long forgotten.

Cover was certainly not evil, but tasers have evolved - in both design and application - to become evil.

It's really too bad that Jack Cover didn't quite live to see the day when the RCMP, the national police force of Canada (arguably the 'most reasonable' nation in history), would admit that the latest versions of the tasers are actually 'potentially lethal' and 'can kill'.

I wonder what he might have thought about that?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

So, 'Whois' pushing "Excited Delirium" ??

Mr. Michael Brave is (or 'was') connected directly to Taser International - he is (or perhaps 'was') Taser International's "National Litigation" lawyer [LINK].

He is also involved with an outfit called "LAAW International, Inc."
[JOKE: "Laaw"... I guess they specialize in stretching the laaw?].

The following 'Excited Delirium'-named websites are registered to, or associated with, Mr. Brave - and thus, indirectly, have connections to Taser International. I've provided links to the 'WhoIs' inquiries so that these registrations can be fact-checked.


URL's linked (indirectly thru Brave/LAAW) to Taser International:

Exciteddelirium.com [Whois]
Exciteddelirium.us [Whois]
Excited-delirium.net [Whois]
Excited-delirium.org [Whois]
Excited-delirium.info [Whois]
Excited-delirium.us [Whois]
Exciteddeliriumsyndrome.com [Whois]


And for bonus points:
Exciteddelirium.info is 'privately registered' [Whois] by 1and1.com and also links to IPICD.

1and1.com are the same outfit that has registered all of the above public registrations for Laaw.


Draw your own conclusions.

You're either in on it, or you're being played like a trumpet.


On the Canadian news, every now and then, one hears about a really stupid and mindbogglingly moronic individual that commits some minor crime, and then walks straight back to his house - leaving his footprints in the freshly fallen snow.

Minor updates 15 Feb 2009.

Friday, February 13, 2009

The dangerous world of law enforcement...

Line-of-Duty Deaths of Law Enforcement Officers in Canada - 1999-2008

All data from www.odmp.org [LINK for Canada/1999, then browse year-by-year].

Death by violence marked with red.

With all due respect to the fallen, we must examine the facts.


1999: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 6 (Aircraft accident: 1, Automobile accident: 1, Struck by vehicle: 2, Training accident: 1, Vehicular assault: 1)

2000: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 9 (Aircraft accident: 2, Automobile accident: 1, Fall: 1, Heart attack: 1, Motorcycle accident: 2, Struck by vehicle: 2)

2001: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 7 (Aircraft accident: 1, Automobile accident: 2, Drowned: 1, Gunfire: 2, Training accident: 1)

2002: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 12 (Automobile accident: 6, Gunfire: 1, Heart attack: 1, Natural disaster: 1, Struck by vehicle: 3)

2003: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 6 (Aircraft accident: 2, Automobile accident: 3, Motorcycle accident: 1)

2004: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 7 (Assault: 1, Automobile accident: 1, Gunfire: 1, Heart attack: 2, Stabbed: 1, Vehicular assault: 1)

2005: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 11 (Aircraft accident: 2, Automobile accident: 2, Drowned: 1, Gunfire: 5 [four in one horrific incident], Heart attack: 1)

2006: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 6 (Automobile accident: 1, Duty related illness: 1, Gunfire: 3, Vehicular assault: 1)

2007: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 4 (Gunfire: 3, Vehicular assault: 1)

2008: Total Line of Duty Deaths: 2 (Automobile accident: 1, Heart attack: 1)



Observations:

Accidental deaths are about 70% (49 of 70) of the total. Therefore, logically as opposed to emotionally, to address legitimate concerns about officer safety, the first attention should be directed to traffic safety issues, seatbelt use, procedures for conducting vehicle stops in busy traffic, etc.

And what's up with all these aircraft accidents? Eight (8) deaths in ten years - in aircraft accidents!! How many police officer get on airplanes in the normal course of their duties? And how many get off again? Geesh. Too many officers learning to fly on Company time perhaps? Joy rides masked as aircraft traffic patrols perhaps? Who knows... But if you're looking for somewhere to start - start with that!


2003 was the year when Taser introduced the X26 taser. This more-or-less marks the point where tasers really started to be more and more common in Canada. There were just four (4) officer deaths by violence - total - in the 5 years before this point (1999-2003 inclusive). There were seventeen (17) officer deaths by violence in the 5 years after this point (2004-2008 inclusive).

Even generously adjusting for the tragic Mayerthorpe incident in 2005, where four officers were murdered in one day, the overall trend of officers being killed (through violence, as opposed to accidents) is still sharply UP coincident with the introduction of more and more tasers into the Canadian law enforcement system.

No matter how you look at the data, the increased usage of tasers in Canada has been coincident with a significant upturn in officers' deaths. And it's not a small change. It's a three- or four-to-one ratio from one end of a decade to the other. That's huge.


Late-2007, with the well-publicized and video-captured killing of Mr. Dziekanski at Vancouver Airport, was when the Canadian public first noticed tasers, became outraged, and began the push-back against tasers. While the taser 'debate' raged in Canada during 2008, police actions were scrutinized like never before. There is some indication that some police forces began to scale-back some of the more outrageous taser overuse and misuse. A certain police chief even fretted out-loud that his officers might be mass-murdered if they were slow to zap subjects due to the public outcry.

But according to this data, there have been zero violent deaths of police officers since late-2007. All through 2008, and even including 2009 to date, no officers were murdered in Canada.

More than a year. Zero. None. Zip. Nada.

So police officer deaths by violence in Canada plummetted to zero in 2008 perfectly coincident with increased public scutiny of taser overuse, misuse and abuse.


These are the facts.

Draw your own conclusions.


P-flop... P-flop... P-flop... - the distant sound of taser fan-boys' heads exploding due to overexertion.

An open letter to Australia, re: tasers

The Courier Mail [LINK]

Hello from Canada. I hope that you Aussies are doing okay with all those horrific bush fires.

Taser news from Canada: The RCMP (Canada's national police force) has today [2009 Feb 12] admitted that 'tasers can kill', that 'tasers can cause death', that 'tasers are potentially lethal'.

And they have immediately restricted their use to only the most serious situations. As an example, the RCMP Comish has said that a 2nd officer should provide "lethal cover" (with a gun) in case the taser fails. This should eliminate about 99% (literally) of all taser deployments. No more brandishing tasers at children for example.

This RCMP taser policy change also inherently excludes use of the taser in its Touch Torture more (also known as 'Drive Stun' mode). I've always wondered why the police wouldn't just use the glowing end of a lit cigarette for an alternate method of pain compliance that is otherwise exactly the same (intense pain, minor burns and injuries). What's the difference? [LINK]

Canada is well ahead of Australia in the taser learning curve. So you have a choice. You can go through the same learning curve as Canada has gone through over the past two years, or you can bone-up on the ins-and-outs of tasers in Canada.

My blog has about 750 posts on the subject. They're mostly all backed-up with links to sources.

www.Excited-Delirium.com (don't forget the dash)

Another blog is called 'Truth ... Not Tasers'.

I hope that Australia will take advantage of all the experience that Canada has had with tasers.

You could save yourself a lot of time and trouble.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

'Any press is good press', eh?

"...recognizes the stun guns can cause death..." - CBC [LINK]
"...tasers potentially lethal..." - CTV News [LINK]
"...stun guns can cause death..." - Int'l Herald Tribune [LINK]
"...[tasers] ...can cause death..." - The Associated Press [LINK]
"...the weapons [tasers] can kill." - Reuters [LINK]
"...the stun gun can cause death..." - Canada.com [LINK]
"...the stun gun poses a risk of death..." - The Star (Toronto) [LINK]
"...tasers can cause deaths..." - All Headline News [LINK]
"...taser stun guns can kill..." - The Canadian Press [LINK]

Let's see: death, potentially lethal, death, death, can kill, death, death, deaths, kill.

"Protect life", eh?

The guy that called the taser 'a street level death lottery' was bang-on.

RCMP - tasers 'pose a risk of death'

The Star [LINK]

OTTAWA – The RCMP has shifted its Taser policy, now training its officers that use of the stun gun poses a risk of death "particularly for acutely agitated individuals."

In the past, the RCMP had suggested using the weapon was appropriate in cases where "resistant" individuals could be subdued in order for them to be given medical attention. "We no longer allow that," RCMP Commissioner William Elliott told a parliamentary committee this morning.
...
The new policy also says use of the Taser must be "reasonable" in circumstances where otherwise a firearm would be used. Elliott said it should now only be used where there is "lethal overwatch" or where another police officer is standing by ready to shoot his gun at an individual if the Taser fails to subdue the suspect.

The new instructions also warn of the "hazards of multiple deployment or continuous cycling" of the weapon.
...
Elliott's explanations did not satisfy Opposition MPs who suggested the RCMP still hasn't tightened its controls enough in response to a report by the public safety committee last year. NDP MP Jack Harris said "threats to public safety" is a vague phrase open to interpretation.
...