justletmelive

justletmelive wrote

Reply to by antwawo22

how can people still believe that the intelligence community can be trusted?

Two things:

  1. Nobody really does. If you hadn't noticed (and I wouldn't blame you, because most people haven't), there's been a new story in the news the past few days about how the CIA has been caught collecting mass data of U.S. citizens in violation of U.S. law without any regulatory framework or oversight at all. The reason why this isn't on every channel 24/7 the way it might have been a decade ago is that it just isn't news anymore. Nobody's really surprised at this point; the issue isn't that everyone doesn't already know what the government has become, the issue is that everyone is either too afraid of them or too apathetic to actually do anything about it.

  2. American intelligence are a bunch of rotten, selfish scumbags, but Russia's intelligence community is even more ruthless. These are the guys who got away with torturing local anarchist militias with electrocution devices and run around the planet poisoning dissidents and traitors with Russian-exclusive nerve agents just so everyone else knows that it was them. I'm not arguing that the CIA don't conduct assassinations or do any number of unjustifiable things in pursuit of their goals, but the Russians just plain don't give a fuck at all. And yes, invading Ukraine is indeed in their best interests, because NATO poses an existential threat to their country in general, especially if the U.S. sets up missile bases in Ukraine capable of quickly striking Moscow, and Ukraine joining NATO would torpedo any hopes Russia has of getting the land back (which seems to be on their to-do list). Furthermore, the West isn't likely to directly respond militarily unless and until Ukraine formally joins NATO (as they didn't in 2014), unlike the situation with Taiwan, which the U.S. would be far more likely (though by no means certain) to respond to with violence if an invasion were attempted. Putin isn't scared of sanctions or any of the other half-measures that the West are threatening him with. I'm not saying American intelligence wouldn't do something equally horrible if it was in their best interests, but I do believe that if there is a false flag event on the horizon, it will be Russia staging it in order to justify a takeover of Ukraine before it has a chance to join NATO. Russia knows that the U.S. isn't going to do anything about it, and Russia also knows that NATO will never rescind its open-door policy.

To answer your first question: to avoid a world war, we either need Ukraine to agree not to join NATO or to ever put missiles anywhere that feels threatening to Moscow and for the Russians to believe them and agree to a ceasefire, or else we need to not escalate things to that level if and when an invasion happens. I personally think that it's highly likely that Russia invades, but that the probability of it escalating to World War III is much lower unless a bunch of other nasty things all happen at the exact same time in just the wrong way. Most likely, the West will wag their finger and send Moscow a sternly-worded letter, the U.S. will vote to implement sanctions, and maybe the gas deal with Germany gets put on hold. It would be stupid to risk a full-scale military intervention against Russia, and everyone (including Russia) knows that. If such an intervention did happen, it'd be limited to the borders of Ukraine, and the U.S. and Russia would leave each others' actual borders alone for fear of a potential nuclear war. If the U.S. and Russia do somehow get pulled into a full-scale conflict, yeah, we're all fucked, but I don't think anyone wants that.

To answer your second question: again, everyone already knows that the intelligence community is actively hostile to the populace. It's just that nobody cares. How would we get rid of the threat that American intelligence poses to the American populace and the planet in general?

We make them afraid for their lives. We let them know if they keep this sort of bullshit up, they're not safe. But they're a formidable enemy, and nobody wants to get their hands dirty or risk their lives going up against them, so they're going to keep getting away with it. If we got everybody on the same page, it'd be game over immediately, but nobody's motivated to do anything. That's the problem.

Makes me think of that scene in The Dark Knight (which was a metaphor justifying the abuses of the Bush-era intelligence community) where the Chechen asks the Joker, "What do you propose?" And he replies, "It's simple. We kill the Batman." And everyone in the room just laughs.

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justletmelive wrote (edited )

All of your replies to me seem to be subtly implying that I'm a liar. Or am imagining things?

I did add:

If Switches aren't locked up,

because they are most definitely locked up where I'm at, and I was surprised that they aren't in the OP's location, but I just assumed that it might be different in different places. I've seen larger consoles in bigger boxes unlocked before.

As far as Best Buy in the United States goes, while almost everything of real monetary value is locked up, there are still a ton of useful things (headphones, flash drives, controllers, burner phones that can only use wifi, low-end tablets, blu-rays that other stores don't carry) that aren't, so I wouldn't consider it a waste of time. It is much higher risk than Walmart, but it's not hands-on (AFAIK, both Walmart and Best Buy are hands-on in Canada, aren't they? - do correct me if I'm wrong), so you can probably manage an escape if necessary.

Larger (non-handheld) game consoles, TVs, and other massive items are not locked up, so you might be able to bolt out the front door with those if you're fast. Certain brands of portable hard drives are not locked up, but I've been followed every time I've tried that one. Tablets under $200 aren't locked up.

Best Buy is still definitely the easiest electronics store. Others have even more extensive security systems and have people at the door ready to tackle you and who apparently won't get in trouble for bad stops, so they're very liberal with their accusations (including times when I payed for everything).

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justletmelive wrote

Well, it didn't work. This happened in a low-crime area where cops have nothing to do and, I imagine, either the LP had a working relationship with a local cop or else he called the cops and just said, "Hey, I've got someone trying to walk out with my merchandise. Can you send someone over?"

This was a period of time where I was stealing the exact same item every day at the exact same time, using the exact same method. One day, for whatever reason (I don't remember what was going through my head, exactly; this was a long time ago), I went inside and just sat down on a bench in the front of the store. Next thing I know, police everywhere. When they asked me whether I'd stolen anything, I just replied, "Not today." The LP guy (it was the same guy working there for several years, and he was never exactly discreet) was standing behind them. They didn't press the matter after asking me that, so my guess is that he called the cops as soon as he saw me on the premises and then realized he fucked up as he reviewed the camera footage on their way over. Again, if I'd known better, I'd have made an issue of it.

I've had LP from that Walmart chase me across the parking lot and threaten to beat me up over $30 of merchandise (never saw that guy again, so I'm not sure if he kept his job), so all I can say to that is that how it's supposed to work or how it "usually" works isn't always how it works. This is a couple of incidents out of the dozens or hundreds of times I've stolen from the place, and I was not engaging in best practices in either case (in the first case, I was establishing a really obvious pattern, and in the second, I was shoplifting drunk and bolted for the door with a handful or merchandise when I was 30 feet out), but these things do happen.

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justletmelive wrote

Good job on making it out without handcuffs, but you really just should have left the other stuff instead of caving to the pressure. You could have just said, "Oh, whoops. I don't want that stuff after all." Not much they could've done as long as you hadn't passed the point of sale.

How did they know you stole that day? Easy: they didn't. They knew your M.O. You did something suspicious enough on a previous visit that they did catch onto somehow (maybe they were watching you on camera one day, saw you enter one area with a bunch of stuff and then enter a different area without it, but with a much bigger bulge in your shopping bags) and then started watching you. They realized your lifting had a pattern, saw you walking around the store one day with your reusable shopping bags, and decided to call the cops.

This has happened to me. Some Wal-Mart LP (whether or not they're supposed to do this) will go ahead and gamble on calling the cops the moment you enter the building if they're sure you steal consistently and do nothing other than steal. I established an easily identifiable pattern a while back, one that I thought was pretty ironclad, only to be met at the door by pigs in blue costumes on the one day I didn't steal anything. If I'd known better back then, I would have raised a stink with management and tried to get the LP guy reprimanded for a bad stop so that he wouldn't try that again.

If you didn't see any cops, it's also possible that they were banking on you hearing them and were trying to scare you. Scare tactics work well on lifters who still have an ounce of uneasiness with what they're doing, which is why the main way regular employees at more stores "help" with shoplifters is just aggressively offering assistance.

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justletmelive wrote

I remember a crime ring doing something like this with iPads at Walmart a few years back. They got caught, but only after they made off with a fuckton of iPads.

What are you going to do if the employee just carries the laptop back with them while they get the accessory? AFAIK, stores that carry items like that train their employees not to leave them on the counter unattended for any reason. I don't know about Apple stores, but this def wouldn't work for a console at Game Stop.

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justletmelive wrote

Reply to comment by GoodOldWorkingClass in by !deleted35647

This is the method I use sometimes. It works, although I usually keep the plastic store bag in my coat and just bag things directly from the basket on my way out instead. The plus side being that if an employee notices you have a shopping bag in your handbasket and you're dropping things into it (those cameras are pretty high-up, remember), you might be fucked. Bagging it in the pharmacy or cat food aisle just before walking out takes about four seconds longer than just dropping the basket with a full bag on the floor, so it doesn't raise the risk considerably (if someone sees you do either one, you're probably going to be followed and asked to come back to the office).

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justletmelive wrote

I doubt it, unless they're activated at the register in the first place. If they're all sitting out in the open, there's no way for them to know the barcode of the one you specifically stole. But if they can't be used until they're activated at the register, you just won't be able to use it in the first place (this is how they protect phones).

It's a good idea to lift Nintendo Switches if you think you can get away with it. I don't know if I'd try it without a good game plan, myself.

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justletmelive wrote

Reply to comment by !deleted35647 in by !deleted35647

Regardless, it's not going to help them as much as buying would help them. If do you want to own those shoes someday, stealing might be your most ethical option. At any rate, if you don't steal them, someone else will probably buy them, and you're still robbing them of that little victory.

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justletmelive wrote (edited )

If Switches aren't locked up, your best bet is probably a walkout. Find out what the busiest times are, park somewhere else (or use public transport), wait until the guy at the door is distracted or far away enough that he won't be able to block you in time (don't watch him for any period of time, though), act like you're walking in a different direction completely, and then just book it out the doors at the last second. They can't touch you or follow you into the parking lot, but they can grab the merch, and they can block your exit (and if you touch him while he's trying to block you, it is now officially a robbery, which means the cops are now a hundred times more likely to respond, and you're now a hundred times more likely going to the pokey), so be fast.

For the record, it probably isn't a great idea regardless unless you know what you're doing. Security at Best Buy isn't exactly "tight" where I'm at, but they definitely put more into it than Walmart or CVS (which are a cakewalk). There's always a guy up front watching the cameras, there are plainclothes LP who have followed me around for long periods after picking up something expensive, and there are managers who have admittedly suspected me of trying to steal even when I wasn't there to steal anything.

Truth of the matter is that it's not exactly Fort Knox, but they are watching. They can't actually do much other than ask you for it back nicely and try to block your exit if you're slow, but I would try to be in and out quick. You really don't want to hang around if they call the police.

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justletmelive wrote

I don't keep myself from lifting in places I regularly visit and do business at, but I try not to be impulsive about it unless it's something tiny and easily concealable that I'm actually going to get some use out of (an SD card, set of cheap earbuds, etc.). Even then, I conceal in known blind spots shortly before I walk or check out and drop it on the spot if I get a bad feeling. Also nothing wrong with running a couple of items you want for free over the self-checkout without actually scanning the barcode (just be careful about this and don't do it every time). Sometimes I keep little $1.00 ramen barcodes in the palm of my hand and give myself a 98% discount on something nice.

If there's something I want during a regular shopping trip that might draw more attention, I'll make sure I know where it is and come back later (wearing a mask, of course) in slightly different clothing and without actually buying anything and conceal it normally (or just walk right out if it's too bug to conceal), minimizing the chances that they'll definitely be able to say it was me in court.

If I wanted something that was certain to net me a felony conviction if I was caught red-handed, I'd do my homework and go somewhere further away.

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justletmelive wrote

I agree with the majority of your post, but "don't shit where you eat" isn't a meaningless platitude. Really, that one has a lot of practical application when you're a criminal of some sort.

It means don't rob the bank where you go to withdraw $100 every two days and are on first-name basis with the teller. It means don't keep twenty pounds of heroin at your house under the mattress where there might be an investigation/raid if you're a small-time dealer. It means don't obviously launder huge amounts of money through the company you're relying on as a source of legitimate income. It means don't poison yourself. Might seem like common sense to some, but you'd be surprised how many people need to hear it.

I'm not sure it applies to low-level shoplifting, as I do steal ticket or misdemeanor-level amounts from stores I'm a regular customer at, but I wouldn't pull a massive heist or try to commit credit card fraud at one of these places.

Also, it depends on the store whether or not cameras are being watched. They probably aren't at Whole Foods, they almost certainly are at Kroger's, and Walmart varies from location to location, day to day. Cameras are cheap these days, and a lot of the ones on the wall probably work well enough. You're right that they're more for reviewing big incidents after the fact, but there are LP in stores like Walmart who walk around the store watching the cameras on their phones.

I do agree that as long as you're not doing a walkout with ten laptop computers after picking a lock with burglary tools, all you need is proper technique.

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