Dept of Education Gestapo?

Recently,  SWAT team went to arrest a young man for his estranged wife being delinquent on her education loan.  6 AM on a Tuesday morning, the SWAT team busted into his home, cuffed him in front of his kids, and had him sit in the squad car for six hours.  Meanwhile, his estranged wife was not there.

When he later went to the Mayor’s office, they and the local police department had nothing to do with what happened.  It seems that the federal Department of Education issued the warrant and sent out the SWAT team!

So, we have another reason why we should close down the DoE, and return education back to local communities.  A huge federal bureaucracy cannot help but turn tyrant eventually.

See the article here:  http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/department-of-education-swat-raid-for-unpaid-student-loans/

15 thoughts on “Dept of Education Gestapo?

  1. I agree that this is awful conduct. However, from other news sources I get the feeling that there’s more to this story (probably more than just delinquent loans). I’m hoping reporters will do some follow-up stories here.

  2. If there are other crimes, then they should be investigated by state or federal investigators, NOT by the Dept of Education. In no instance should the DoE be sending in SWAT teams

  3. Totally agree that Education policy should return to the states and local communities. I agree with Tim that there has got to be something else going on here, and I did a bit of searching, and it turns out that the Dept of Ed was probably pursuing a criminal investigation, not busting somebody for not paying students loans:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/blogpost/post/education-department-swat-team-raids-california-home/2011/06/08/AGUxlKMH_blog.html

    In any case, what is the Dept. of Education doing with its own SWAT team? Haven’t they heard of the FBI?

  4. They don’t have their own SWAT team – they give the orders to someone who does. Either way, I have a really hard time imagining any crime dealing with student loans that justifies a raid like this.

    If they have any real evidence that someone did something wrong, why don’t they just arrest them, or execute some sort of civilized search warrant? Is someone suspected of student loan misconduct really going to come out with guns blazing? Would the government use a SWAT team to execute a search warrant on Enron or Goldman Sachs?

  5. Though the topic is serious, I have to admit, the Department of Education SWAT team I’m picturing made me laugh a little. My 68-year-old eighth grade English teacher probably leads the squad. She was a tyrant.

  6. Mark D., SWAT teams are used around the country for small time crime that used to be dealt with by a local police departments. It’s to justify budgets to buy military-grade weapons, supplies and vehicles.

  7. David Koresh, remember him? The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms could have arrested him at a local store almost anytime they they felt like it, but instead they decided to conduct an apocalyptic siege that ended in a mass suicide.

    The story with Ruby Ridge was similar. To say nothing of no-knock raids on vitamin shops. And the most tragic part about it was excesses like these were some of the reasons why Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols became convinced the government was the enemy and blew up the federal building in Oklahoma City.

  8. My friend across the street is a police officer in our small city and he’s complained more than once about SWAT being called in. Without him being blunt about it, I get the feeling local PD feels like it’s a bit much at times as well.

  9. The ABC News 10 report:

    “U.S. Department of Education spokesman Justin Hamilton confirmed for News10 Wednesday morning federal agents with the Office of the Inspector General (OIG), not local S.W.A.T., served the search warrant. Hamilton would not say specifically why the raid took place except that it was part of an ongoing criminal investigation.”

    “OIG is a semi-independent branch of the education department that executes warrants for criminal offenses such as student aid fraud, embezzlement of federal aid and bribery, according to Hamilton. The agency serves 30 to 35 search warrants a year.”

    http://www.news10.net/news/local/story.aspx?storyid=141108

  10. How many news outlets checked this out before going public? Now it appears that maybe there is some serious criminal activity at issue, not unpaid loans. Those who jumped on this for political purposes should be ashamed. What if the church had been unfairly and inaccurately attacked in such a manner?

  11. I figured it was a result of fraud identify theft relating to student loans. That being said, nothing short of very clear evidence this man was holed up in his house with his finger on the trigger and waiting for the Police to barge through the door with guns justifies the swat team.

    I would assume the police could could easily be able to nab him when he went out to grab the paper. Or got in his car to go to the store, etc. Yes, it would require having two people watch the place from a few hundred yards away for a few hours instead of getting decked up in their shiny black tactical gear. But it would also mean less abuse of force, less likelyhood of innocent deaths and less expense.

    Joe, this has nothing to do with politics unless your politics are to favor state oppression of the innocent and guilty wherever possible. Regardless of your R or D stance on teachers or unions, etc. if a Federal Department of Education is calling law enforcement shots over the heads of the local police department this is a clear case of being on the road to tyranny. We elect local leaders, we elect local sherrifs to help run the police department. We don’t elect a DoE to get involved in local law enforcement matters.

    Representation is a very clear issue. I don’t like the idea of electcing a President of the United States, but having no say in dozens (hundreds, thousands?) of departments that have an even greater say over my life. Let’s face it, no one is going to say, “Vote (for or against) Pres. Obama based on his choice to run the DoE!”

    If the DoE is a position that is necessary, and moreover if they take precedence in matters of law enforcement over the Sheriff and police then they should be elected and accountable.

  12. Good points, Chris. This really should not even be considered a political issue. Nobody wants SWAT teams breaking into their homes, even if it is part of a DoE criminal investigation. You can get the perps elsewhere.

  13. What’s funny (sad) Geoff is that if the alleged criminal was indeed waiting in his house with a gun, they probably would use their brains and try to nab him another way. Like when he went to the store, work, etc. It’s only when they feel reasonably comfortable they can get away with overwhelming force that they do it. Once the level of possible retaliation by the criminal increases, they get sneaky.

    I think in our reliance of large systems which treats individuals as cogs in a machine to be forced into compliance (or cast off) we are creating an immoral apparatus that treat individuals inhumanely and absolves itself from consequences because “the system” was just doing what it was designed to do. The same goes with large corporations that aren’t permitted to fail when individuals in the market no longer have need for it.

    Google POSIWID (the purpose of a system is what it does) for an interesting concept that I think can be applied to both the Gospel, Statism, and Corporatism as well as Satan’s alternate proposal.

  14. Because putting a freeze on the credit, and garnishing wages was too easy? Sheesh…I hope he sues.

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