Given that it seems that every Federal agency has an Office of Inspector General with armed law enforcement officers and a SWAT team, I guess this solicitation by the USDA OIG isn’t too surprising.
Beyond the question of why they even need them which is highly debatable, the solicitation has got me to wondering about semi-automatic submachine guns. Aren’t they an oxymoron? Perhaps the contracting office didn’t want to use the term “assault rifle” or “assault weapon” and just decided that “submachine gun” was a kinder, gentler way of saying they wanted a bad-ass looking firearm to put the fear of God and the USDA into those damn farmers. Given the vagaries of Federal acquisitions, who knows for sure.
11 thoughts on “They Need Them Because Raw Milk And Heirloom Seeds Are Dangerous”
I have mixed feelings when I see agencies like the USDA with submachine guns. First why do they need them. However, second, "in common use" must mean something, and government employees after all are civilian employees.
Over the long term, arming of federal employees with submachine guns will be the undoing of the NFA, FOPA of 1986, and subsequent state bans semi-automatic rifles. The constitutional requires bearable firearms available to the government also be available to everyone else.
USDA includes the Forest Service so perhaps they have a plan. Of course, it also includes Food Stamps.
USDA OIG investigates welfare fraud, often involving stores illegally redeeming food stamps for cash (at $0.50 on the dollar). Many of those stores are in really, really bad neighborhoods, with heavy gang presence, and the agents need to secure a perimeter during warrant seraches. Dog fighting also falls into their purview, and raiding a dog fight involves dealing with large groups of people, many with felony records.
Wouldn't it really make more sense for agencies like the USDA to call in another federal law enforcement agency to help esp. if that other agencies' sole purpose is law enforcement?
…or to call in local law enforcement, which is what state law requires in at least some states. Notable among these is Nevada, where the BLM recently and famously ignored that bit of state law.
There aren't enough agents for that, really. But they often call in local law enforcement for that purpose. The issue goes to how federal law enforcement is structured. Because each agency implements some aspect of federal law, *all* agencies have a law enforcement function. They all have OIG units, if nothing else, to investigate waste, fraud, and abuse within the agency and its programs. They are sworn federal LEOs, so they get guns.
Also, FWIW, most agencies don't actually *have* dedicated tactical teams. They assemble teams as needed from their available agent pool.
We can decide we aren't comfortable with this, but the alternative is to give all of those functions to a single agency like the FBI, and I'm not sure that would be better.
I'm not comfortable with it. I don't see why you need any federal agency to investigate/enforce something that is a violation of state and local laws. Dog-fighting certainly is a local violation most places. Since state agencies typically enroll and administer food stamp programs, it looks like they could be responsible for fraud.
As an example, back in the '80s, I ran wrote code to uncover Medicare fraud using state records on state equipment. I'm not sure how they handled enforcement and prosecution, but I doubt that it was done with a federal SWAT team.
At least if all the police power is in One agency, it's easier to control and keep track of.
ACS is spot on when it comes to the aggregation of power. ONE FORCE is more terrifying as a shit-ton of tiny units who cannot communicate, coordinate or even work in a timely and functional manner.
However, mushroom's points are the one I latch onto: we need to stop the application of force in so many routine situations, regardless of who is doing the door kicking.
Well, a couple of commentators have touched on some of the more logical reasons. USDA does manage the forest service. They also run Wildlife Services which deals with feral swine, deer, and other dangerous creatures. But they generally are using AR15s with nightvision to take care of that.
What I suspect this is for has more to do with engagemetn in the inner city – both regarding their jurisdiction over dog fighting and dog breeders as well as food stamp fraud, two activities that have long connections to organized inner city crime.
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