Your Vote And Why It Doesn’t Matter

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Well the voting season is upon us. Of course right now it is only the primaries, but after hearing radio commentary and being a witness to the countless illogical and naive social media posts, along with countless articles by the lamestream media, I have decided I would do my own commentary. I do not have all day and night to be on Facebook or Twitter, and frankly I cannot understand how people have THAT much time on their hands. With that being said, I don’t even know where to start since there’s so much to all of this but I’m going to share my account with you in the shortest way possible.  Continue reading

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PRELIMINARY HEARING: DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA VS ADAM KOKESH

The courtroom this morning was dimmed for Adam Kokesh’s first hearing after he was taken into Federal custody on Friday, July 26. As Adam was brought in in front of the judge in an orange prison jumpsuit and shackles, Adam’s attorney, Peter Cooper, immediately asked why the Federal Marshals had confiscated Adam’s notes. The judge replied that Mr. Cooper could “buy the transcripts, if he wished”. The tone for this case thus set, the prosecution brought forward Detective Robert Freeman to testify regarding the affidavit that he presented to Judge Frederick Sullivan. The affidavit for this case is in addition to the sealed affidavit that allowed a coalition of federal thugs to perform a raid on Adam’s Herndon residence three weeks ago. Continue reading

NSA whistleblower supported Ron Paul’s presidential run

Former US Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) (AFP Photo)

With all eyes turned to 29-year-old Edward Snowden, the former CIA analyst who leaked documents about the National Security Agency’s domestic spying is already on his way to becoming the most discussed man in America. Less than 24 hours after the Guardian went public with Snowden’s identity on Sunday, the leaker’s personal life and politics have already taken center stage.

Now at the center of some discussions is Snowden’s endorsement of Ron Paul during last year’s presidential race, a revelation that is providing a rare glimpse into the ideologies of a man who will likely face decades in prison for going public.

According to donation info published by the Center for Responsive Politics’ website OpenSecrets.org, Snowden made two contributions totaling $500 to the presidential campaign of then-Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) during the last calendar year. Snowden made a $250 contribution to Rep. Paul on March 18, 2012, and another $250 donation on May 6.

Rep. Paul was vying for the Republican Party’s nomination as president during last year’s election, ultimately losing that slot to former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney. Paul ended his active campaigning phrase shortly after Snowden’s second contribution was made and retired from Congress in early 2013 after serving decades on Capitol Hill.

Although other links between Snowden and Paul haven’t been published yet, the leaker did say in an interview this week that he supported a third party presidential candidate during the 2008 race that ultimately ended in a win for Barack Obama, a Democrat.

A lot of people in 2008 voted for Obama. I did not vote for him. I voted for a third party. But I believed in Obama’s promises. I was going to disclose it [but waited because of his election]. He continued with the policies of his predecessor,” Snowden told the Guardian.

Before Barack Obama won his bid for the White House in 2008, he campaigned on a promise of having the most transparent presidential administration in the history of the United States. Today his office continues to stand by that vow despite spearheading an unprecedented war against leakers. The Obama administration has so far charged seven people under the Espionage Act, and more leakers have been prosecuted under that legislation than by every previous president combined.

Snowden is reported to currently be in Hong Kong after fleeing his apartment in Hawaii at the beginning of last month. He previously worked for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and, most recently, defense contractor Booz Allen Hamilton. He only worked there for three months before the Guardian published top secret documents last week about the NSA’s phone and Internet surveillance programs, operated for years under a provision of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and a well-hidden program called PRISM.

The NSA has built an infrastructure that allows it to intercept almost everything. With this capability, the vast majority of human communications are automatically ingested without targeting. If I wanted to see your emails or your wife’s phone, all I have to do is use intercepts. I can get your emails, passwords, phone records [and] credit cards,” Snowden told the Guardian.

I don’t want to live in a society that does these sort of things … I do not want to live in a world where everything I do and say is recorded. That is not something I am willing to support or live under.”

Before the Guardian went public with Snowden’s allegations about the spy program — then later his identity — the leaker went to the Washington Post and asked them to publish his evidence of PRISM.

Snowden asked for a guarantee that The Washington Post would publish — within 72 hours  —  the full text of a PowerPoint presentation describing PRISM, a top-secret surveillance program that gathered intelligence from Microsoft, Facebook, Google and other Silicon Valley giants,” Post reporter Barton Gellman admitted this week.

I told him we would not make any guarantee about what we published or when,” Gellman recalled for the Post. According to Gellman, “The Post sought the views of government officials about the potential harm to national security prior to publication and decided to reproduce only four of the 41 slides.”

Snowden’s attempt to expose the secretive program through the Washington Post draws an eerie parallel to the case of Bradley Manning, the 25-year-old Army private who gave hundreds of thousands of sensitive government files to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks — but not before his phone calls to the Post and New York Times were ignored.

On the campaign trail last year, then-Rep. Paul said he’d protect Bradley Manning and other whistleblowers if elected to the White House.

“I maintain that government becomes more secret and the people’s privacy is being destroyed. We should protect the people’s privacy and we should make the government much more open,” Paul said last April during a campaign stop in San Antonio, Texas.

“I would certainly lean in the direction of protecting people that are trying to tell the truth,” said Paul. “The more openness the better. That’s what a free society is all about. It wouldn’t be so critical if the government was a lot smaller, but because it is so big it is big issue because there is so much that could be hidden.”

 

 

http://rt.com/usa/snowden-nsa-ron-paul-481/

Ben Swann’s Liberty is Rising Truth in Media Project

Friends,

I want to begin by saying thank you for signing up for this email list and for your incredible support of my work with Reality Check and Full Disclosure over the past 2 years.

As promised, you are now the first to hear in detail about my- actually our- next step. Beginning next week on Monday, June 10, we will officially launch the “Liberty Is Rising Truth in Media Project” on Kickstarter. As I have told you, this is the most involved and meaningful project I have ever been involved in and it is not something I can do on my own.

The “Liberty is Rising Truth in Media Project” is a 3 step process:

Inform, Engage, Activate:

Step 1: INFORM

The first step of this project and the primary use of Kickstarter is to create high-end, high-quality Reality Check style segments that can be presented to the public via streaming content sites such as Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, or devices such as Roku andBenSwann.com. Our goal is to produce 100 high quality five to six minute shows and by launching this project independently, the restrictions on subject matter by corporate bosses will not be an issue.

Why do the videos need to be so high quality? Simple, we need to spread this message as far out as we can. Like it or not, we live in a very media-savvy culture and if the public at large is to take this kind of journalism seriously, they need to be able to hear and see it in a way that is deemed credible. You can watch network news programming all day and never hear anything of substance but it sure looks pretty. If we are to educate and inform the public on issues of war, the drug war, monetary policy, drone strikes, the NDAA, CAFR, crony capitalism, etc… it MUST be done in the style and format generations of Americans have been trained to accept as “professional”.

The films will be distributed via multiple platforms. First, we continue to share new content virally via Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, BenSwann.com, and continue to allow alternative media blog sites to use our films without charge and embed them, as long as they are shown in their entirety. This is important because we want as many people exposed to our journalism as possible.

We will be rolling out a highly interactive, informative website that will include all Full Disclosure episodes, a forum, Ben Swann podcasts, and a mobile app.

Also, as I mentioned, we are going to attempt to spread these films into new arenas such as streaming sites like Netflix, Hulu, and Spotify. Again, the goal is to engage the largest audience possible.

Step 2: ENGAGE
Each of us must impact our own circle of influence.

We are currently building out a multi-faceted platform of engagement where you and I will work together to take single issues and impact public opinion. This platform will contain resources like stats, infographics, archived articles, and other educational materials that will be available to download or share.

Students:
This platform will work directly with college student groups like Young Americans for Liberty, Young Republicans, Young Democrats and politically independent groups, giving students hard facts and data to share with peers and teaching them how to hold information sessions on campus.

Journalists:
We will work with journalists across the country challenging them to engage in critical thinking and questioning of local, state and national leaders on issues of importance. We’ll equip them on how to challenge the status quo in their newsrooms and move beyond reading press releases.

Faith Based Communities:
We will engage faith-based communities (Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim, etc) and challenge the acceptance of government control over their religious activities.

Local Lawmakers:
We will engage local and state lawmakers and challenge the over-reach, over taxation, and policing for profit that is taking place in every city and town in America.

Tea Party:
We will engage those in the Tea Party movement who entered the movement for the right reasons, to protest over taxation and government control.

Occupy:
We will engage those in the Occupy movement who rightly protested the consolidation of wealth among a small group of people and who have created a crony capitalist system (that isn’t capitalism at all).

Building Consensus:
The goal is to help Americans escape the Left/Right paradigm of arguing with each other while politicians and big money run the nation and our lives. We desire to create unity among all these groups in the areas where we can agree. That happens when we are defined not by who we stand against, but what we stand for. It is not about Left vs. Right or Republican vs. Democrat… but Liberty vs. Tyranny.

You and I will go through this process together. Beyond just sharing the content, you will be instrumental to the gathering of information and the actual creation of that content. With your engagement we will be able to create public awareness and social willingness to drive change.

Step 3: ACTIVATE

The best part of this step is that the work you and I will have already done is key. Having forced important issues into the forefront of public awareness we will have already changed minds and that will allow action to be taken.

Through strategic partnerships with established political and student groups as well as individual experts in the fields or medicine, education, economics, security, drug policy etc. we will begin to crowd-source “change strategies”.

The end result of these strategies will include legal and legislative process for changing U.S. policy overseas and here at home. We will challenge lawmakers who continue to engage in hypocritical behavior and are unwilling to stand up for rule of law. As a long-term goal, we will eventually work with lawmakers to draft legislation to correct the nation’s trajectory. Dr. Ron Paul borrowed the words of Victor Hugo when he declared in 2008, “An idea whose time has come cannot be stopped by any army or any government.”

Ron Paul Said It Best:

I recently had the chance to interview Dr. Paul and we talked in depth about the changing media landscape. How has media changed for a man who has spent his entire life attempting to change the system?

“When I first started in politics in the 70’s, we basically had three major networks and they were very, very close together on philosophy…..But now the options are great…..Now the information is going out differently. It’s going out on handheld devices and computers and telephones and they can turn you on and off when they want. They have so many more choices.”

Dr. Paul then added:
I’m optimistic that things are going to do well and I’m optimistic because you’re (Ben Swann) involved in this fight with us.”

Again, I want to thank you for your support so far. As you can see this next step is a very ambitious project. There is risk here but I believe that every great movement in history has been accompanied by great challenge and risk.

Between now and June 10th, I need your help.

1. Please go sign up for this Facebook event for the project:
https://www.facebook.com/events/182282331926426/

2. Please forward this email on to friends and family who you believe might want to be a part of this project.

3. Please share the new cover photo featured on my Facebook pages that can be foundhere.

There has never been a moment like this before in world history where a society has had this kind of collision of technology and information. This is our moment. I hope that next Monday, you will commit to helping me to shake the media landscape in America! I leave you with these words from a great patriot Samuel Adams who once proclaimed,

“It does not take a majority to prevail… but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.” – Samuel Adams

#LibertyisRising

Ron Paul: Fix IRS by shutting it ‘once and for all’

**FILE** Former Rep. Ron Paul, Texas Republican, speaks during a campaign stop in Manchester, N.H., on Dec. 19, 2011, during his bid for the party's presidential nomination. (Associated Press)

Former Rep. Ron Paul of Texas called the recent IRS fiasco troubling — but writes that the only way Congress can protect the freedoms of Americans from a long pattern of suspected IRS abuse is to “shutter the doors” of the agency “once and for all.”

The longtime GOP congressman writes that IRS agents in the 1930s were essentially “hit squads” against opponents of the New Deal, and that allegations of IRS abuse spanned the administrations of Presidents KennedyNixonClinton and George W. Bush.

“The bipartisan tradition of using the IRS as a tool to harass political opponents suggests that the problem is deeper than just a few ‘rogue’ IRS agents — or even corruption within one, two, three or many administrations,” Dr. Paul writes in his weekly column, “Texas Straight Talk. “Instead, the problem [lies] in the extraordinary power the tax system grants the IRS.”

The libertarian and tea party hero goes on to argue that the power of the IRS can only be countered with a complete overhaul to the country’s tax system.

“The federal government will get along just fine without its immoral claim on the fruits of our labor, particularly if the elimination of federal income taxes are accompanied by serious reduction in all areas of spending, starting with the military spending beloved by so many who claim to be opponents of high taxes and big government,” he writes. “While it is important for Congress to investigate the most recent scandal and ensure all involved are held accountable, we cannot pretend that the problem is a few bad actors. The very purpose of the IRS is to transfer wealth from one group to another while violating our liberties in the process, thus the only way Congress can protect our freedoms is to repeal the income tax and shutter the doors of the IRS once and for all.”

 

 
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/may/20/ron-paul-fix-irs-shutting-it-once-and-all/#ixzz2VM7o9Mho

Obama Expands His Power to Kill While Reducing Our Capacity to Defend Ourselves

(Reason-Andrew Napolitano) -Does the government work for us, or do we work for the government? How can the president claim the lawful power to kill whomever he wishes and at the same time ask Congress to incapacitate our ability to defend ourselves against those who might seek to kill us?

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul struck a raw nerve in the weak underbelly of the Obama administration last month with his 13-hour filibuster. Paul was furious—as every American should be—that the president refused to admit that he does not possess the lawful authority to kill Americans with drones. The senator used the confirmation hearings of now CIA Director John Brennan as a forum in which to articulate the principled constitutional argument that whenever the government wants the life, liberty or property of anyone, it can only obtain that via due process.

Due process is the command of the Fifth Amendment. “Due process” is the jurisprudential phrase for a fair jury trial and the accompanying constitutional protections. The reasons we have these protections are the wish of the Framers that our natural rights—here, the rights to life, liberty and property and to fairness from the government—be guaranteed and their fear that they not suffer under another Star Chamber. Star Chamber was a secret gaggle of advisers to British kings that decided who among the king’s adversaries would lose his life, liberty or property without due process. Once that decision was made, it was carried out.

Paul articulated all of this during his filibuster. He did not read gibberish, as those who have filibustered in the past sometimes have done. He made principled moral and legal arguments for 13 hours. His arguments read like a passionate college lecture on personal liberty in a free society.

The next day, Attorney General Eric Holder sent a terse letter to Paul that reads in its entirety as follows: “It has come to my attention that you have now asked an additional question: ‘Does the President have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on American soil?’ The answer to that question is no.” This is an unremarkable statement, but one that only came about after the senatorial equivalent of pulling teeth.

Paul’s filibuster was prompted by the administration’s repeated refusal to answer that question. Those refusals came from the testimony of Holder, FBI Director Robert Mueller and then CIA Director-nominee Brennan. They all declined to answer the question of whether the president has the power to use drones to kill Americans in America, and they all referred the questioners to their boss in the White House.

Their boss in the White House has never publicly answered that question, but he has exercised that horrific power without publicly defending or legally justifying it. When lawyers for potential victims of presidential killings (how terrifying does that sound?) sought to ascertain the source of that power, the president dispatched Justice Department lawyers into court to persuade judges that the legal argument supporting killings is classified. That’s because, those Justice Department lawyers argued, the decisions to kill—just like Star Chamber’s decisions to kill—are made in secret; hence, the legal support for the killings must be kept secret.

How could a legal argument be classified? How could a judge accept that sophistry? How could a president sworn to uphold the Constitution claim the power to kill people on his own?

As if to antagonize further those who believe the Constitution means what it says, the same president who says he can’t reveal the legal basis for his killing wants to take away your right to self-defense against a killer, and he wants to prevent you from having the means with which to shoot at a tyrant should such a monster take over the government.

The reason we are a free and independent people today is our secession from Great Britain, and that secession only came about because we had the means with which to repel the soldiers of the British king. Without weaponry in the hands of ordinary folks and unknown to the government (so it doesn’t know from whom to seize weapons), we will lack the ability to repel a modern-day George III.

So, today we have a president who has sworn to uphold the Constitution but seems hell-bent on violating it. He wants to use the force of legislation to weaken your right to self-defense, and he is already using powers never granted to him to kill uncharged, unindicted Americans whom his advisers in secret have decided must go.

The government derives its powers from the consent of the governed. Do you know anyone who consented to this? If you do, they consented for themselves. The rest of us will keep our lives, liberty and property and defy any government efforts to take them.

Arizona passes law making gold and silver legal tender

 

(DailyMail) -States are now rushing to push bills through allowing for gold and silver to be recognized as legal tender as politicians fear that the U.S. economy is going to collapse.

The push from states like Arizona, which passed through their House of Representatives on Monday allowing gold and silver to be considered legal tender, comes as conservatives fear that the Federal Reserve is running the country’s economy into a deep hole.

Lawmakers say the global economy is on the precipice of financial ruin and the U.S. dollar could soon be worth less than the paper used to make it.

New money: More than a dozen states have pushed laws through so that gold and silver can be used as legal tenderNew money: More than a dozen states have pushed laws through so that gold and silver can be used as legal tender

These doomsayers are pushing forward legislation that would declare privately minted gold and silver coins legal tender, no different under state law than the U.S. dollar printed by the federal Department of Treasury.

Arizona is one of more than a dozen states to incorporate similar laws into their roster, as many conservatives are harboring a growing distrust in government-backed money.

‘This is the type of currency we have had over the history of mankind,’ Republican state Representative Steve Smith said of the Arizona law.

In 2011, Utah became the first state in the country to legalize gold and silver coins as currency.

Lawmakers in Minnesota, North Carolina, Idaho, South Carolina, Colorado and other states have debated similar laws in recent years.

Many investors have invested their money in precious metals in recent years as a hedge against the declining value of the dollar.

Loss of faith: Conservative politicians are concerned about the economic policies put into place by Ben Bernanke during his time as the chairman of the federal reserveLoss of faith: Conservative politicians are concerned about the economic policies put into place by Ben Bernanke during his time as the chairman of the federal reserve

When the value of the dollar declines, gold prices rise.

Gold rose $12, nearly 1 per cent, to $1,604.60 per ounce on Monday with news of Europe’s bailout plan for cash-strapped Cyprus. Silver inched slightly higher, up 2.3 cents to $28.874 per ounce.

The dollar was up against the euro, the currency used by 17 European countries, as well as the Japanese yen and the Canadian dollar in February.

The Arizona bill, which advanced in a 4-2 vote by a House committee Monday, states that gold and silver should be legal currency not subject to tax or regulation as property.

The Republican-led Senate gave the bill its blessing in February in a 17-11 partisan vote.

Angry Arizonans: The Arizona House of Representatives passed the law through and now it continues through the process before it goes ahead an is enacted in the stateAngry Arizonans: The Arizona House of Representatives passed the law through and now it continues through the process before it goes ahead an is enacted in the state

Proponents of the switch to gold and silver argue paper money is too vulnerable to government manipulations.

When central banks boost the amount of currency in circulation to drive down interest rates, the value of that currency relative to others can decline.

Gold-backed money fell out of favor during World War I because the U.S. and many other countries needed to print more cash to pay for the war.

In 1971, President Richard Nixon formally abandoned the gold standard. Now Republicans are pushing for it to come back as they do not trust President Obama and the economic policies put into place by Ben Bernanke during his time as the chairman of the federal reserve.

Bitcoin crashes, losing nearly half of its value in six hours

(arstechnica.com) On Wednesday afternoon, the Bitcoin bubble appears to have burst. As of this writing, its current value is around $160—down from a high of $260. (It fell as low as $130 today.) There is no obvious explanation for why the digital currency has fallen so far and so fast, although the market correcting after such a huge rise might be a good explanation.

Some redditors have taken solace in a comment thread entitled “Hold Spartans.”

“This is just the market venting some pressure after these huge gains,” wrote anotherblog. “To be honest I’m glad it’s happening now. If it recovers, it will demonstrate resilience in the market and give confidence to future buyers and current holders that they don’t need to panic sell, reduce the chances of a crash in the future.”

Coincidentally, the plunge came several hours after a reddit user by the name of “Bitcoinbillionaire” suddenly, spontaneously decided to give away around $12,000 (more than 63 BTC) worth of the digital currency. Bitcoinbillionaire rewarded 13 seemingly random redditors, then stopped the whirlwind spree after about eight hours. At the moment, no evidence links the currency’s plunge with this random reddit charity.

Bitcoinbillionaire took advantage of reddit’s Bitcointip mechanism, which allows users to send each other small amounts of cash (usually less than $5). The mysterious benefactor appears to have given away 20 BTC (now worth slightly less than $4,000) as his or her first gift to one Karelb. This gift happened under a comment titled: “I wish for the price to crash.” That comment now seems prophetic.

A look at the account transferring all this money shows that two hours before the giveaways began, Bitcoinbillionaire received 50 BTC (about $9,500) from another account without an IP address.

Business Insider reported that Bitcoinbillionaire has left hints that he or she was an “early adopter”and had forgotten he or she even had any bitcoins. Not much is known beyond that, as Bitcoinbillionaire vanished as suddenly as he or she appeared.

“You’ve made me change my mind about this whole thing,” Bitcoinbillionaire wrote. “I’m done.”

Don’t feel bad if you missed the action. Business Insider also notes that this pot of cash is now being “paid forward.”

White House to argue for GPS tracking without a warrant

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(RT) -Lawyers for the Obama administration will argue next week that US authorities are not required to obtain a search warrant before attaching a GPS device to an individual’s car in order to keep tabs on them.

The case, set to be heard on Tuesday by the 3rd US Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia, comes over a year after a US Supreme Court decision failed to convince the Department of Justice that warrantless GPS tracking is an infringement on Americans’ Constitutional rights.

This case is the government’s primary hope that it does not need a judge’s approval to attach a GPS device to a car,” Catherine Crump, a lawyer with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) told Wired magazine.

In January 2012 the Supreme Court overruled an Obama administration assertion that police should be permitted to affix a GPS device to a personal vehicle without a search warrant. Questions were left, however, when the Court declined to answer whether that type of search was unreasonable and when justices could not reach a consensus on how police would need to monitor a suspect before requesting a warrant.

We hold that the government’s installation of a GPS device on a target’s vehicle, and its use of that device to monitor the vehicle’s movement, constitutes a ‘search,’” Justice Antonin Scalia wrote for the five-justice majority last January.

Scalia stipulated in the opinion that a warrant was not always necessary, but failed to mention any specific examples of when this would be the case.

Now prosecutors are honing on Scalia’s exact language, arguing that the Supreme Court’s decision only specifies that the installation of a GPS constitutes a search, while the tracking that follows does not. The government argues that the Supreme Court has given police near free reign in allowing for search warrant exceptions.

Searches of students, individuals on probation and border crossings are among the proposed exceptions.

The argument resurfaced after Philadelphia brothers Harry, Michael and Mark Katzin were indicted for a string of late-night pharmacy burglaries in 2010. Suspicious of the Dodge Caravan they thought was used in the robberies, investigators monitored the vehicle with a GPS device for 48 hours and were able to trace the brothers’ involvement.

Arguing in US v. Katzin, government prosecutors claimed that a law requiring them to seek a warrant would seriously impede investigations of terrorist suspects.

Requiring a warrant and probable cause before officers may attach a GPS device to a vehicle, which is inherently mobile and may no longer be at the location observed when the warrant is obtained, would seriously impede the government’s ability to investigate drug trafficking, terrorism and other crimes,” authorities said in court.

Law enforcement officers could not use GPS devices to gather information to establish probable cause, which is often the most productive use of such devices. Thus, the balancing of law enforcement interests with the minimally intrusive nature of GPS installation and monitoring makes clear that a showing of reasonable suspicion suffices to permit use of a ‘slap-on’ device like that used in this case.”

While the ACLU accused the government of prosecutorial overreach in the case, it praised a new bill – the so-called ‘GPS Act’ – that would require law enforcement to get a warrant in order to access an individual’s GPS tracking history, whether it be from a vehicle device or a cell phone provider. The bill, which would not affect emergency services but would require police to prove probable cause, was reintroduced into Congress by Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Mike Kirk (R-IL) and Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-UT).

In a statement, Wyden decried the government’s blind eye to police overreach.

GPS technology has evolved into a useful commercial and law enforcement tool – but the rules for the use of that tool have not evolved with it,” he said. “The GPS Act provides law enforcement with a clear mandate for when to obtain a warrant for the geolocation information of an American…It protects the privacy and civil liberty of any American using a GPS-enabled device.”

Michigan Senate Votes 37-0 to Defeat NDAA

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(Activist Post) -In a vote of 37-0 (1 absent), the Michigan Senate joined the growing list of of states and municipalities throughout America in passing their version of the Liberty Preservation Act, released by the Tenth Amendment Center. Senate Bill 94 (SB94) now proceeds to the Michigan State House. State Senator Rick Jones, the bill’s sponsor, and grassroots activists forged the bipartisan alliance against the federal law which applies the law of war and indefinite detention to anyone on U.S. soil.

After the bill’s passage in the Senate, PANDA Michigan’s Dennis Marburger vowed relentless opposition to all federal legislation which subverts the U.S. Constitution, saying:

The very active and knowledgeable group of Michiganians fighting this egregious Federal overreach will not rest until there is real, tangible and viable state resistance to D.C.’s attempts to deny our rights and threaten our safety – whatever unconstitutional legislation, edict or judicial fiat our government employees use as an excuse.

The unlawful mandates of the NDAA are sections 1021 and 1022 which allow the arrest, detention and/or transport to foreign prisons of anyone the federal government “suspects” is a terrorist.

Those so imprisoned can be denied trial, access to an attorney, and the ability to even advise someone they have been detained.
To enforce NDAA, the federal government will need assistance from the states. If signed into law, SB94 will announce the strong determination of the people of Michigan that the 2012 NDAA is unconstitutional.SB94 is a companion bill of HB4138, sponsored by State Representative Tom McMillin. A similar bill passed the Michigan House last fall on a vote of 107-0.If you are in Michigan, or know someone in Michigan, it is time to fight for your rights.Contact your Michigan State Representative at: http://www.house.mi.gov/mhrpublic/

Join us in the battle to stop the NDAA nationwide: http://pandaunite.org/join-us/

Predator drones can track cell phones and tell if a citizen is armed

Homeland Security required that this Predator drone, built by General Atomics, be capable of detecting whether a standing human at night is "armed or not."

Homeland Security required that this Predator drone, built by General Atomics, be capable of detecting whether a standing human at night is “armed or not.”

(Credit: U.S. Department of Homeland Security)

(CNET) -The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has customized its Predator drones, originally built for overseas military operations, to carry out at-home surveillance tasks that have civil libertarians worried: identifying civilians carrying guns and tracking their cell phones, government documents show.

The documents provide more details about the surveillance capabilities of the department’s unmanned Predator B drones, which are primarily used to patrol the United States’ northern and southern borders but have been pressed into service on behalf of a growing number of law enforcement agencies including the FBI, the Secret Service, the Texas Rangers, and local police.

Homeland Security’s specifications for its drones, built by San Diego-based General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, say they “shall be capable of identifying a standing human being at night as likely armed or not,” meaning carrying a shotgun or rifle. They also specify “signals interception” technology that can capture communications in the frequency ranges used by mobile phones, and “direction finding” technology that can identify the locations of mobile devices or two-way radios.

The Electronic Privacy Information Center obtained a partially redacted copy of Homeland Security’s requirements for its drone fleet through the Freedom of Information Act and published it this week. CNET unearthed an unredacted copy of the requirements that provides additional information about the aircraft’s surveillance capabilities.

Homeland Security's Predator B drone can stay aloft conducting surveillance for 20 hours.Homeland Security’s Predator B drone can stay aloft conducting surveillance for 20 hours.

(Credit: U.S. Department of Homeland Security)

Concern about domestic use of drones is growing, with federal legislation introduced last month that would establish legal safeguards, in addition to parallel efforts underway from state and local lawmakers. The Federal Aviation Administration recently said that it will “address privacy-related data collection” by drones.

The prospect of identifying armed Americans concerns Second Amendment advocates, who say that technology billed as securing the United States’ land and maritime borders should not be used domestically. Michael Kostelnik, the Homeland Security official who created the program, told Congress that the drone fleet would be available to “respond to emergency missions across the country,” and a Predator drone was dispatched to the tiny town of Lakota, N.D., to aid local police in a dispute that began with reimbursement for feeding six cows. The defendant, arrested with the help of Predator surveillance, lost a preliminary bid to dismiss the charges.

“I am very concerned that this technology will be used against law-abiding American firearms owners,” says Alan Gottlieb, founder and executive vice president of the Second Amendment Foundation. “This could violate Fourth Amendment rights as well as Second Amendment rights.”

Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection agency declined to answer questions about whether direction-finding technology is currently in use on its drone fleet. A representative provided CNET with a statement about the agency’s unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) that said signals interception capability is not currently used:

 

U.S. Customs and Border Protection is not deploying signals interception capabilities on its UAS fleet. Any potential deployment of such technology in the future would be implemented in full consideration of civil rights, civil liberties, and privacy interests and in a manner consistent with the law and long-standing law enforcement practices. 

CBP’s UAS program is a vital border security asset. Equipped with state-of-the-art sensors and day-and-night cameras, the UAS provides real-time images to frontline agents to more effectively and efficiently secure the nation’s borders. As a force multiplier, the UAS operates for extended periods of time and allows CBP to safely conduct missions over tough-to-reach terrain. The UAS also provides agents on the ground with added situational awareness to more safely resolve dangerous situations.

 

During his appearance before the House Homeland Security committee, Kostelnik, a retired Air Force major general who recently left the agency, testified that the drones’ direction-finding ability is part of a set of “DOD capabilities that are being tested or adopted by CBP to enhance UAS performance for homeland security.” CBP currently has 10 Predator drones and is considering buying up to 14 more.

If the Predator drones were used only to identify smugglers or illegal immigrants crossing the Mexican and Canadian borders, or for disaster relief, they might not be especially controversial. But their use domestically by other government agencies has become routine enough — and expensive enough — that Homeland Security’s inspector general said (PDF) last year that CBP needs to sign agreements “for reimbursement of expenses incurred fulfilling mission requests.”

“The documents clearly evidence that the Department of Homeland Security is developing drones with signals interception technology and the capability to identify people on the ground,” says Ginger McCall, director of the Open Government Project at the Electronic Privacy Information Center. “This allows for invasive surveillance, including potential communications surveillance, that could run afoul of federal privacy laws.”

A Homeland Security official, who did not want to be identified by name, said the drones are able to identify whether movement on the ground comes from a human or an animal, but that they do not perform facial recognition. The official also said that because the unarmed drones have a long anticipated life span, the department tries to plan ahead for future uses to support its border security mission, and that aerial surveillance would comply with the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and other applicable federal laws.

The documents show that CBP specified that the “tracking accuracy should be sufficient to allow target designation,” and the agency notes on its Web site that its Predator B series is capable of “targeting and weapons delivery” (the military version carries multiple 100-pound Hellfire missiles). CBP says, however, that its Predator aircraft are unarmed.

Gene Hoffman, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur who’s the chairman of the Calguns Foundation, said CBP “needs to be very careful with attempts to identify armed individuals in the border area” when aerial surveillance touches on a constitutional right.

“In the border area of California and Arizona, it may be actively dangerous for the law-abiding to not carry firearms precisely due to the illegal flow of drugs and immigrants across the border in those areas,” Hoffman says.

CBP’s specifications say that signals interception and direction-finding technology must work from 30MHz to 3GHz in the radio spectrum. That sweeps in the GSM and CDMA frequencies used by mobile phones, which are in the 300MHz to 2.7GHz range, as well as many two-way radios.

The specifications say: “The system shall provide automatic and manual DF of multiple signals simultaneously. Automatic DF should be able to separate out individual communication links.” Automated direction-finding for cell phones has become an off-the-shelf technology: one company sells a unit that its literature says is “capable of taking the bearing of every mobile phone active in a channel.”

Although CBP’s unmanned Predator aircraft are commonly called drones, they’re remotely piloted by FAA-licensed operators on the ground. They can fly for up to 20 hours and carry a payload of about 500 lbs.

Programs That Should Be Cut – But Won’t Be Cut – From The Federal Budget

 

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(Alt Market) – Washington is laying on the malaise pretty thick lately over automatic budget cuts set to take effect in March, with admonitions and partisan attacks galore. Of course, those of us who are educated in the finer points of our corrupt puppet government are well aware that the public debate between Democrats and Republicans amounts to nothing more than a farcical battle of Rock’Em Sock’Em Robots with only one set of hands behind the controls. The reality is, their decisions are scripted, their votes are purchased, and they knew months ago exactly how America’s fiscal cliff situation would progress. The drama that now ensues on the hill is meant for OUR benefit and distraction, and no one else.

The Obama Administration warns that “sequestration” (austerity) will result in a return to recession for the U.S. News Flash, folks! The country never left the recession that officially began in 2008. Sorry to burst that inflated recovery hopium bubble…

Janet Napolitano warns that cuts will result in a greater risk of terrorist attacks. Apparently, an extra $85 billion per year buys us complete safety from the Muslim boogeyman, though the DHS has been far more concerned with “homegrown extremists” (people like me) than Al-Qaeda lately…

The White House and DHS has warned that funding for border control may be diminished, and the southern border will be left “wide open” to infiltration. Apparently, the White House is not aware that the southern border is ALREADY wide open. If they were truly concerned about the porous border, maybe they would refrain from decisions to release over 10,000 illegal immigrants from holding before cuts have even been finalized, sending a clear message to Mexico that there will be no consequences for anyone sneaking into the U.S. without permission…

The DOD warns that cuts to defense will result in a weakened military posture for America, and yet, our posture has already been greatly weakened by our numerous illegal wars in the Middle East (some overt, some covert). I have yet to see any tangible assessments on how our continued presence in Iraq and Afghanistan has made our nation safer…

Let’s put all of this into perspective; America’s current annual deficits have exceeded $1 trillion for the past four years. Our official national debt has expanded nearly $7 trillion in the span of five years. Through QE3 (QE infinity), the Federal Reserve is now pumping over $85 billion (that we know about) per month into our financial system. And in March, the federal government is being asked to cut $85 billion over a span of six months?

It sure seems like a drop in the bucket compared to the massive expenditures already taking place. Yet, these moderate cuts are being heralded as a sign of fiscal apocalypse by the White House and others. Why? Because America has reached the point at which any disruption in government liquidity will damage our recovery fantasy, and the establishment is acclimating us to the coming crisis so that we don’t immediately take up our torches and pitchforks. The lie is so tenuous, that the fiat must forever flow, or the illusion crumbles. Not only must spending continue unabated, it must also EXPAND with each passing year in order to handle the growing liabilities of entitlements and interest payments on capital already borrowed. Even the smallest of cuts could indeed send our economy into a tailspin (with a little help from the Federal Reserve and reduced currency creation), because that’s exactly how desperate our circumstances are.

Of course, the establishment plans to make matters worse by applying cuts where they will be most painfully felt by the populace. The fear mongering is reaching fever pitch with threats of wide open borders, weakened military superiority, lost government jobs, unemployed teachers, etc. But let’s imagine, just for one blissful moment, that the government was NOT utterly criminal and subversive; what kind of cuts would an honest government make right now in order to counter the dangers of debt disintegration and dollar devaluation?

…I really don’t know because I’ve never lived under an honest government. I have little personal experience in how one would behave. However, here is what I would cut from the budget…

Unnecessary Foreign Aid

Will some cuts be made to foreign aid after “sequestration”. Yes. But nowhere near enough. The U.S. spends around $50 billion a year on foreign aid, including $3 billion in “direct assistance” to Israel (meaning they get a lot more money and equipment through indirect means), $2 billion to Iraq, $1.7 billion to Pakistan, $1.4 billion to Egypt, $1.2 billion to Haiti (the Hatians are the only people on the list so far that actually need the money), and $1 billion to Kenya (…Kenya?). The list goes on and on. Even Mexico gets around $400 million a year in foreign aid from the U.S.

The establishment has conditioned the general public to consider any suggestion of cutting foreign aid to be taboo. Politicians on both sides of the aisle will wail and scream at the thought of reducing aid to Israel or other Middle East nations. That said, the bottom line is that we cannot afford it. You may believe every dollar to these countries results in the thwarting of evil doers and the filled bellies of orphan children. It doesn’t matter, because we can’t afford it. You may believe the whole of America’s international reputation and diplomatic sway hangs in the balance over foreign aid expenditures, but this is irrelevant, because we can’t afford it.

The most detrimental threats to the U.S. are INTERNAL and financial, not external, and cutting foreign aid would alleviate those detrimental threats by about $50 billion dollars. I’m a little tired of hearing how America is supposed to “export democracy” and keep its fingers in the cookie jars of nations around the world. This is a globalist philosophy that has never borne fruit and never will. It is time to bring the money back home where it might actually do some legitimate good.

Occupation Wars

The Neo-Cons played the American people like a banjo for nearly a decade claiming first that the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq were necessary in order to defuse Al Qaeda influence. Then, when we realized that the resource rich fields of the Middle East were the true target, rather than the “terrorists”, they changed their tune and claimed that now it would be “irresponsible” to leave the region, regardless of the fallacy of the mission, because if we did innocent people would be left to chaos and ruin.

Ultimately, the Neo-Cons never cared about the innocent citizens of Iraq or Afghanistan, they only cared about manipulating the American public into acquiescing to continued occupation, and that is exactly what they did. Today, the Obama Administration carries on exactly where the Neo-Cons left off, using the same propaganda and the same lies with a new face and a new presentation.

Original cost estimates of the two invasions were around $100 billion for a two year involvement, and the American people were assured that this was all that was needed. Today, over a decade later, the costs have escalated to at least $4 trillion (Obama’s claim of a $1 trillion price tag is an outright fabrication), and still have not abated. If the government truly wanted to save massive amounts of capital and shield the populace from debilitating service and entitlement cuts, they would bring the troops home; ALL OF THEM, and stop flushing money down the toilet in the Middle East.

Instigations Of Foreign Insurgencies

Why is the Obama Administration continually pouring money into the coffers of Middle Eastern insurgencies led by Al Qaeda operatives that supposedly hate the U.S.? They did it in Egypt, they did it in Libya, and now they are doing it in Syria. Is Obama an idiot, or, is there a greater purpose at work? Is the goal to deliberately destabilize the region, or are they doing it out of blind hubris and stupidity? In either case, all the money being showered on these civil wars is a wretched waste, and should be stopped.

TSA Thugs

The Transportation Security Administration is the most hated institution in America. It is reviled across the country and its dubious purpose is questioned by almost everyone. Americans, no matter how uneducated and oblivious, still do not like being molested by blue gloved bureaucratic freaks with preexisting criminal records. We do not like having our small children molested by them either. We do not like being irradiated so that our naked pictures can be stored in a central database. We do not like thugs, brown shirts or blue shirts, ordering us around and looking down their noses at us. Frankly, Americans have a history of shooting those kinds of people…

DHS head Janet Napolitano has already released warnings ahead of budget cut decisions stating that the TSA may be on the chopping block, and that this would put American travelers “at risk”. I highly doubt that this is the plan, though…

The TSA is not meant to protect the citizenry in any way. It is a conditioning machine for the masses, and nothing more. It is designed to inhibit our natural rebellion against personal search and seizure tactics, and make us apathetic to deeper intrusions into our privacy. That is all. I find it highly unlikely that the establishment would dismantle such a useful tool of oppression. But, if Napolitano is sincere, then I say go for it Janey, do your worst! Abolish the whole damned agency, because if you don’t, eventually, we’ll do it for you.

The Criminal ATF

The Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms has a long history of questionable and often illegal activities, usually ending with the murder of civilians with dissenting views. However, the latest snafu involves a much larger conspiracy, culminating in the agency being caught red handed feeding American weapons to violent Mexican drug cartels in an effort to stigmatize gun ownership in the U.S. and to wrongly attribute deaths in the border region to American gun dealers. This debacle is known as “Fast and Furious”.

Eric Holder, Attorney General of the U.S. and a staunch proponent of the ATF, has defended the Fast and Furious agenda to the point of contempt of Congress. Holder is a gun control advocate and key player in the current attacks on the 2nd Amendment, despite his habit of protecting agencies that feed weapons to psychopathic drug lords.

Any agency with this much schizophrenic disregard for the rights and safety of Americans should be wiped from the ass-end of history. It also has an annual budget of $1.2 billion, which could be spent in far better places, to be sure.

Big Brother DHS

What exactly does the Department of Homeland Security do that the FBI and the CIA did not already do before its inception? The great lie spread in the wake of 9/11 was that various alphabet agencies were not “in communication” with each other, and that intelligence gathered was not “reaching the right people”. Of course, Bush had received several warnings pre-9/11 of impending attacks, and the FBI and CIA on more than one occasion had the opportunity to apprehend Osama Bin Laden, but were thwarted by the Administration itself, sending a clear message that the government catches “terrorists” only when it WANTS to catch a terrorist.

The DHS was established as a means to centralize information sharing, but it has become much more. It now encompasses and directs much of the internal law enforcement outfits of the U.S. through so-called fusion centers, and even plays a growing role in external matters. Much of the analytical paperwork coming out of the agency, though, does not deal with foreign enemies like Al Qaeda. Rather, the agency is almost obsessively focused on “domestic threats”, like returning war veterans, Constitutionalists, gun rights champions, Ron Paul supporters, and Liberty Movement activists.

In the end, the DHS is intended to combat a specific opponent, and that opponent is obviously the American people.

The DHS is set to absorb $2.6 billion in cuts if sequestration goes though, causing the organization to spew dire prophecies of doom. Yet, the DHS is projected to have a $9 billion surplus by the end of 2013, and apparently has enough funding to place orders for over 2 billion rounds of combat ammunition (not for training purposes, sorry disinfo-agents). I say cut the head off the beast. Remove DHS, save American liberties, and spend those billions elsewhere.

Gitmo-Style Black Sites

I find it highly distasteful and disturbing that the U.S. government is operating black sites like GITMO where they can torture and murder in obscurity, rather than having to answer to the public, all while instituting these activities in our name. The common argument is that these prisons are necessary to isolate the most volatile of villains, and obtain vital data in the war on terror. Well, despite what you may have seen in the movie ‘Zero Dark Thirty’, torture rarely if ever produces reliable and concurrent intel that can be acted upon to prevent any impending attack, or apprehend any enemy agent. And, after what we saw at Abu Ghraib, the government has proven itself absolutely untrustworthy to handle incarcerated prisoners in any capacity, let alone in places where independent oversight does not exist.

Didn’t Obama make a campaign promise in 2008 to shut down GITMO, by the way? Why not do it now, save the country some cash, and end a disgusting and immoral practice that demeans the whole of our society?

Domestic Drone Programs

Why does the federal government need 30,000 drones in the skies over the heads of American citizens? Why is this being pursued? If the government seeks to make war on the American people, then by all means, admit that this is the goal and at least we will know the rationalization for spreading a spider’s web of remote controlled technotronic death from sea to shining sea. This is the only POSSIBLE purpose that such a fleet of drones could serve. If this is not the reason for the escalation of drone activity, then there is no logical reason, and they should be perfectly willing to end these programs, saving the U.S. millions if not billions of dollars.

Corporate Welfare

Long before the banker bailouts and the “too big to fails”, government has been pouring free money into the coffers of international corporations that were already claiming billions in capital. This welfare has reached epic levels; around $93 billion by some estimates. Why? Maybe because the establishment knew years ago that these companies were headed for debt implosion. Or, maybe because D.C. is a revolving door and corporate vampires like to spend time in the public sector bleeding taxpayers dry. I don’t know. What I do know is that whatever purpose corporate welfare was supposed to serve, it failed. We are in the midst of the most extensive economic crisis of all time, and many of the companies that received welfare for the past couple decades are debt addled failures that provide little in job creation. It’s time to cut our losses…

The Obama Family’s Extravagant Vacations

All this panicked discussion on budget cuts, yet, no one seems to be talking about reducing the most frivolous of expenditures. The Obama family’s four trips to Hawaii alone have cost Americans tax payers at least $20 million (this is a very conservative estimate)! Why is the nation pounding its collective head against the wall over extreme national debt obligations while this joker and his overprivileged family are spending a thousand times more on each of their vacations than any other citizen?

Hey Obama, try a trip to Florida, you money swilling bastard! Maybe you could squeeze it in for under a million? Take a swim in the Everglades perhaps, the water is fine…

One Day Soon, Everything Will Be Cut…

If Americans are frightened of a small budget cut of $85 billion, imagine what they’ll do when they realize this is just the beginning of the avalanche. It will not be long before our foreign creditors turn away from the Dollar and begin using alternative currencies like the IMF’s SDR basket. At that point, the purchasing power of the Greenback will be severely suffocated, and the numerous social services the public enjoys today will be buried as well.

Some people might question why I did not include any entitlement programs or social support in my list of needed budget cuts. I would only point out that such programs are not long for this world anyway, and though most of them shouldn’t exist in the first place, the expenditures listed above are even more peripheral. The feds will keep welfare going for as long as possible, in order to subdue public response and soften collective rage, but there will come a time when the food stamps, medicare, disability payments, and other subsidies will suddenly stop. EU members like Spain are a perfect example, stealing over 90% of social security funds in order to maintain a façade of solvency, while others are raiding retirement funds and employee pensions, all because austerity measures are exhausting entitlement pools. This is where the U.S. is headed, and it cannot be avoided. Not through fiat printing, or any other nonsensical strategy.

My goal was to merely point out that there are plenty of irrelevant federal appendages out there that could be amputated, but probably won’t be, while other more useful programs will come under fire. In the end, the budget cuts are not about saving money; they are about social maneuvering and political gain. They will be used as an excuse for everything, and will produce nothing favorable, not because cuts are not needed, but because the people in charge of them are not trustworthy.

Ron Paul – “There is one group of Americans I do believe should be disarmed: federal agents”

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(Ron Paul) -While I oppose most gun control proposals, there is one group of Americans I do believe should be disarmed: federal agents. The use of force by federal agents to enforce unjust and unconstitutional laws is one of the major, albeit overlooked, threats to liberty. Too often Americans are victimized by government force simply for engaging in commercial transactions disproved of by Congress and the federal bureaucracy.

For example, the offices of Rawesome Foods in Venice, California, have been repeatedly raided by armed federal and state agents, and Rawesome’s founder, 65-year old James Stewart, has been imprisoned. What heinous crime justified this action? Rawesome sold unpasteurized (raw) milk and cheese to willing customers – in a state where raw milk is legal! You cannot even drink milk from a cow without a federal permit!

This is hardly the only case of federal agents using force against those who would dare meet consumer demand for raw milk. In 2011 armed agents of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) raided the business of Pennsylvanian Amish farmer Dan Allgyer. Federal agents wasted a whole year and who knows how many millions of our tax dollars posing as customers in order to stop Allgyer from selling his raw milk to willing customers.

The use of force against individuals making choices not approved of by the political elite does not just stop with raw milk. The Natural News website has documented numerous accounts of federal persecution, including armed raids, of health food stores and alternative medical practitioners.

Editorial: Does Maine need to water down alcohol sales time limits?

 

State law now allows licensees in Maine to sell liquor “from 6 a.m. on any day until 1 a.m. the following day.” Liquor sales also are prohibited until 9 a.m. Sunday. Two proposals before the Legislature would alter the time limits for alcohol sales.

(Bangor Daily News) -A century ago, liquor — not geography or the economy — split the state into “two Maines.”

Temperance advocates like Stroudwater resident Lillian Stevens, who in 1913 decried the “home-destroying, heart-breaking curse of liquor traffic,” fought to maintain the “dry Maine” first established in 1851.

“Wet Maine” proponents at the time urged repeal of a state constitutional amendment that prohibited the sale of alcoholic beverages in Maine, in part because the ban was ineffective and impossible to enforce.

“Dry Maine” prevailed until 1934, when the United States repealed the national prohibition on liquor sales. Since then, liquor sales have become an important revenue source for state government, and Maine lawmakers have shaken and stirred the state’s liquor laws, incrementally expanding the time frames in which merlot and Millers can be sold.

State law now allows licensees in Maine to sell liquor “from 6 a.m. on any day until 1 a.m. the following day.” Liquor sales also are prohibited until 9 a.m. Sunday. The law allows certain exceptions related to New Year’s Eve revelry; there are slightly different rules for the times alcohol can be consumed on premises.

Two proposals before the Legislature would alter the time limits for alcohol sales again. LD 15, sponsored by Rep. Paul Gilbert, D-Jay, would allow sales to start at 5 a.m. seven days a week. LD 216, sponsored by Rep. Barry Hobbins, D-Saco, would simply allow earlier liquor sales on a Sunday if St. Patrick’s Day falls on Sunday, as is the case this year.

It’s ironic that the Legislature would pass LD 216 on an emergency basis “for the preservation of the public peace, health and safety,” so the bill could take effect immediately and allow Mainers to honor a saint on a Sunday by imbibing stout, whiskey or other libation before 9 a.m. But that irony shouldn’t stop Hobbins’ bill, and LD 15, from passing.

Both measures came in response to constituents’ requests, drew scant opposition and would help support businesses, albeit in a small way. But the proposals also call into question the drip-drip-drip approach to amending Maine’s liquor laws. What is the reasoning behind forbidding convenience stores and liquor stores from selling alcohol in the early morning hours?

The Community Preventive Services Task Force — an independent body of public health and prevention experts whose members are appointed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — reviewed existing research in 2009 and found some evidence that limiting the days or times alcohol can be sold prevents excessive alcohol consumption and related harms. But none of the studies were completed in the U.S.; there was considerable variation across different sites; and they all focused on businesses that sold alcohol to be consumed on-site — bars, not convenience stores.

There doesn’t appear to be any convincing reason why people should be prohibited from purchasing alcohol from their convenience store at 3 a.m., for example, but not 6 a.m. Instead of Maine banning the sale of alcoholic beverages for a few hours in the middle of each night, then revising state law to reflect changing work patterns — or in response to “emergencies” such as when St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Sunday — why not remove all state restrictions on the times when alcohol can be sold at a store?

Gilbert said he introduced the bill at the request of a constituent who owns a convenience store whose customers include mill workers with shifts that end at 5 a.m. The same arguments in support of Gilbert’s bill would apply if shifts ended two hours earlier, and Gilbert said he would not object to an amendment allowing liquor sales any time.

Unless someone in Maine can demonstrate that the state’s residents are safer because they can’t buy alcoholic beverages between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. — or 5 a.m., if LD 15 passes — it’s time to toss away the last vestiges of Prohibition.

DHS Watchdog OKs ‘Suspicionless’ Seizure of Electronic Devices Along Border

 

 

(Wired) -The Department of Homeland Security’s civil rights watchdog has concluded that travelers along the nation’s borders may have their electronics seized and the contents of those devices examined for any reason whatsoever — all in the name of national security.

The DHS, which secures the nation’s border, in 2009 announced that it would conduct a “Civil Liberties Impact Assessment” of its suspicionless search-and-seizure policy pertaining to electronic devices “within 120 days.” More than three years later, the DHS office of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties published a two-page executive summary of its findings.

“We also conclude that imposing a requirement that officers have reasonable suspicion in order to conduct a border search of an electronic device would be operationally harmful without concomitant civil rights/civil liberties benefits,” the executive summary said.

The memo highlights the friction between today’s reality that electronic devices have become virtual extensions of ourselves housing everything from e-mail to instant-message chats to photos and our papers and effects — juxtaposed against the government’s stated quest for national security.

The President George W. Bush administration first announced the suspicionless, electronics search rules in 2008. The President Barack Obama administration followed up with virtually the same rules a year later. Between 2008 and 2010, 6,500 persons had their electronic devices searched along the U.S. border, according to DHS data.

According to legal precedent, the Fourth Amendment — the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures — does not apply along the border. By the way, the government contends the Fourth-Amendment-Free Zone stretches 100 miles inland from the nation’s actual border.

Civil rights groups like the American Civil Liberties Union suggest that “reasonable suspicion” should be the rule, at a minimum, despite that being a lower standard than required by the Fourth Amendment.

“There should be a reasonable, articulate reason why the search of our electronic devices could lead to evidence of a crime,” Catherine Crump, an ACLU staff attorney, said in a telephone interview. “That’s a low threshold.”

The DHS watchdog’s conclusion isn’t surprising, as the DHS is taking that position in litigation in which the ACLU is challenging the suspicionless, electronic-device searches and seizures along the nation’s borders. But that conclusion nevertheless is alarming considering it came from the DHS civil rights watchdog, which maintains its mission is “promoting respect for civil rights and civil liberties.”

“This is a civil liberties watchdog office. If it is doing its job property, it is supposed to objectively evaluate. It has the power to recommend safeguards to safeguard Americans’ rights,” Crump said. “The office has not done that and the public has the right to know why.”

Toward that goal, the ACLU on Friday filed a Freedom of Information Act request demanding to see the full report that the executive summary discusses.

Meantime, a lawsuit the ACLU brought on the issue concerns a New York man whose laptop was seized along the Canadian border in 2010 and returned 11 days later after his attorney complained.

At an Amtrak inspection point, Pascal Abidor showed his U.S. passport to a federal agent. He was ordered to move to the cafe car, where they removed his laptop from his luggage and “ordered Mr. Abidor to enter his password,” according to the lawsuit.

Agents asked him about pictures they found on his laptop, which included Hamas and Hezbollah rallies. He explained that he was earning a doctoral degree at a Canadian university on the topic of the modern history of Shiites in Lebanon.

He was handcuffed and then jailed for three hours while the authorities looked through his computer while numerous agents questioned him, according to the suit, which is pending in New York federal court.

Rand Paul vs. Hillary Clinton, clash of titans

(CNN) — If Monday’s inauguration displayed the gushing, ceremonial aspect of American democracy, Wednesday revealed its more sober and confrontational side — a Senate committee hearing. The hearing was Secretary of State Hillary Clinton vs. the Republicans on the painful subject of Benghazi, Libya.

After a lot of anger from the senators and a surprising amount of emotion from Clinton, the final score was a draw. But some Republicans did better than others, and Clinton probably emerges with a healthier reputation than the administration that she’s leaving. Moreover, the debate throws up some tantalizing “what ifs” about 2016. Is America ready for Hillary Clinton vs. Rand Paul?

Timothy Stanley

To take Clinton first, it’s remarkable how much her role as secretary of state has transformed her.

Five things we learned from the Benghazi hearings

To conservatives, she was once the Lady Macbeth of liberalism; the feminist power behind Bill Clinton’s throne whose every utterance seemed calculated to upset the right. Her book “It Takes a Village” was greeted like a manifesto of anti-American collectivism — so much so that Rick Santorum felt compelled to pen a response called “It Takes a Family.” But secretaries of state often find themselves elevated from partisan politics in to the heavenly realm of “national interest” (think Henry Kissinger or Colin Powell), and therein Clinton has redefined herself as a competent and admirable public servant.

Consider John McCain’s first words at the Senate hearing: “We thank you for your outstanding and dedicated service to this nation and … all over the world where I travel, you are viewed with admiration and respect.” Given her extraordinary hard work and efforts to advance the rights of women and children, she has certainly earned that respect. It’s found in ample supply at home, too. According to Gallup, the former controversialist is now America’s “most admired woman.”

But even if Clinton did get through the hearing with her reputation intact, that doesn’t mean that Benghazi doesn’t leave scars on the administration. The critical — and most electric — round of questioning was started by Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wisconsin. He demanded to know why Clinton didn’t try to find out what was really happening on the ground sooner and why the administration persisted so long in refusing to label the Benghazi incident a “terrorist attack.”

Clinton’s defense was similar to Obama’s during the presidential election: something went wrong, we didn’t want to interfere with ground operations and it took a long time to gather the intelligence to know what really happened.

But Clinton lost her cool and summed up that position in a breathtakingly callous phrase: “What difference, at this point, does it make? It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, senator.” All the difference in the world, I would imagine, to the relatives of the personnel who died.

This rare loss of composure perhaps underlines the weakness of the administration’s case.

The White House seems to think — as John Hayward at the Conservative website Human Events puts it bluntly — “the game ends when they say the magic phrase ‘I take responsibility,’ and they win.” But it does not.

Part of “learning” from the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi is admitting the basic errors that were made and providing the public with a clearer narrative of what really happened. But all we have at the moment are a catalog of errors that make up a very confusing story.

Clinton tears up at Benghazi hearing

Clinton’s heated exchange over Benghazi

Johnson: ‘Surprised’ by Clinton reaction

Ayotte: So many unaswered questions

It’s obvious that the political situation in Libya is not more stable since Moammar Gadhafi was removed from office(just ask any Algerian), that insufficient security was provided at the consulate, that the administration fumbled its explanation of what occurred on September 11, 2012, that the rescue operation was delayed and that the CIA had some shadowy role to play in the whole mess. Clinton’s assurance that “I do feel responsible” is not reason enough to stop asking these questions and just move on.

Who then made the best case for the prosecution from the Republican side?

Given that Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida was participating, it felt at moments like an audition for 2016 — and Rubio’s staff put the video of his questions up on his website with remarkable speed.

Clinton lays out daunting security challenges in North Africa

But the most impressive performance by far was from Rand Paul. He delivered a cool, withering statement that climaxed in this devastating paragraph (and you have to watch it to get the full effect): “I’m glad that you’re accepting responsibility. I think ultimately with your leaving that you accept the culpability for the worst tragedy since 9/11. And I really mean that. Had I been president and found you did not read the cables from Benghazi and from Ambassador (Christopher) Stevens, I would have relieved you of your post. I think it’s inexcusable.”

This performance might be — and should be — remembered well by the Republican base when the primary campaign of 2016 starts. Ever since the last president election, Rand Paul hasn’t set a foot wrong. From his bridge-building visit to Israel to his opposition to the fiscal cliff deal, he seems well placed to become the tea party candidate.

And what an unusually satisfying choice Clinton vs. Paul would be.

It would be a genuine contest between big government liberalism and small government conservatism: Clinton’s internationalism and support for welfare programs vs. Paul’s anti-interventionism and opposition to pork.

The question of who could win such an unusual contest is difficult to answer. The Paul family has a tradition of winning votes from Democrats, but Clinton’s new respectability could also pull votes away from the Republicans. One Kentucky poll found that in a head-to-head contest, she’d even beat Rand in his home state of Kentucky.

It would be a campaign that any elections scholar would relish.

Military Think-Tank Says Constitutionalists Are a Dangerous & Violent Threat

 

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(Occupy Corporatism) -According to a paper entitled “Challengers from the Sidelines: Understanding America’s Violent Far-Right” published by Combating Terrorism Center, a think-tank at the West Point US Military Academy that the “far-right”, “anti-federalist” and groups that support “civil activism, individual freedoms and self-government” are dangerous as “racist/white supremacy movement, an anti-federalist movement and a fundamentalist movement.”

The paper asserts that Islamic extremists are coercing populations in the Middle East, Africa and Asia to assist them in gaining power with the purpose of over-throwing the US government and its allies.

In 2012, the US Armed Forces have announced wars within its ranks as they claim white supremacists are joining the military to infiltrate and overthrow what is referred to as the Zionist Occupation Government (ZOG).

The purveying scheme includes a secret infiltration of racists who are expressly trying to divide the US military. However, the controllers of this concept are the FBI-sponsored Southern Poverty Law (SPLC) Center and Anti-Defamation League (ADL) who are working with the military to train soldiers on how to spot extremists in their ranks. This is the military’s answer to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) See Something, Say Something campaign to create Stasi out of ordinary citizens.

The document states that these “espouse strong convictions regarding the federal government, believing it to be corrupt and tyrannical, with a natural tendency to intrude on individuals’ civil and constitutional rights. Finally, they support civil activism, individual freedoms, and self government. Extremists in the anti-federalist movement direct most their violence against the federal government and its proxies in law enforcement.”

It goes on to correlate modern movements supporting a return to a Constitutional Republic as being violent conservatives living in the past. The report reads: “While liberal worldviews are future- or progressive -oriented, conservative perspectives are more past-oriented, and in general, are interested in preserving the status quo.” the report says. “The far right represents a more extreme version of conservatism, as its political vision is usually justified by the aspiration to restore or preserve values and practices that are part of the idealized historical heritage of the nation or ethnic community.”

The report claims “while far-right groups’ ideology is designed to exclude minorities and foreigners, the liberal-democratic system is designed to emphasize civil rights, minority rights and the balance of power.”

Back in 2011, Vice President Joe Biden accused the Tea Party of having “acted like terrorists” asserting that “we have negotiated with terrorists. This small group of terrorists have made it impossible to spend any money.” This comment came on the heels of assertions that talking to representatives affiliated with the Tea Party are liken to discussing buracracy with Republicans with “guns to their heads” referencing that the Tea Party wielded violent authority of the political party.

In 2010, the “US Army’s Operating Concept 2016-2028” was published and explains how armed forces in the US and overseas will behave in the future. Specific tactical operations, special “theater”, and organized forces are outlined along with the capabilities and priorities of the US armed divisions. In simple terms: a full spectrum operations manual that details stratagems both domestic and foreign.

As outlined in the Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield (IPB) processes are defined by operational environments in regard to battle space, effects, evaluation of threats and adversaries while determining the course of action. In regard to civil situations, and to maintain intelligence and operational purposes, preparations with regard to terrain are inconsequential.

The Marine Corp Intelligence Requirements Handbooks presents new methodology to combat civilian rebellions and is meant to inspire intelligence professionals working on computer-based intelligence efforts.

Contained within the US Army Military Police training manual for Civil Disturbance Operations are outlines describing how the US military will use the arsenal at their disposal to quell domestic riots, confiscate firearms and kill Americans during times of mass civil unrest.

The explicit use of “deadly force” when confronting “dissidents” is clearly stated with the refusal of a “warning shot” and the directives toward weapons that rioters or demonstrators will experience in the name of continuity of government.

According to Doug Haggman’s DHS informant the plan concerning a false flag attack will coincide with a staged assignation attempt on Obama that will be linked to a white supremacist group that will be used to incite black and Hispanic Americans into starting riots all across the nation.

In this scenario a race war will be the situation needed to implement martial law effectively locking down the US, US Army control of the urban cities, erecting DHS checkpoints on all major points of travel, severe restrictions on travel for all citizens and the suspension of elections to ensure that Obama remain seated as the President of the US.

The DHS informant stated: “The DHS is actively preparing for massive social unrest inside the United States. He then corrected himself, stating that ‘a civil war’ is the more appropriate term. Certain elements of the government are not only expecting and preparing for it, they are actually facilitating it.”

Reported in Haaretz back in 2010 the “Obama’s election may usher a political climate that could produce an assassination attempt…It is most likely, though, to be a lone assassin, rather than an organized network.”

The manufactured threat of US veterans stems from the 2009 Department of Homeland Security report entitled Rightwing Extremism. This report clearly outlined that veterans, because of their diverse training in tactical operations, would be a decisive threat to the US government’s plans to declare martial law against the American public in the near future. Defined in the document were domestic extremists, particularly white supremacists, were proposed to be the newest and most dangerous threat to the US since al-Qaeda.

While admitting that the agency had no definitive proof that “domestic rightwing terrorists are currently planning acts of violence, [however] rightwing extremists may be gaining new recruits by playing on their fears about several emergent issues. The economic downturn and the election of the first African American president present unique drivers for rightwing radicalization and recruitment.”

The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force have indicated to owners of gun shops and gun ranges the US government’s new definitions of domestic terrorist that coincide with their demonization of US veterans and propaganda claims that domestic terrorists are more of a threat than their manufactured insurgent groups like al-Qaeda and the Free Syrian Army.

Mainstream media has spun the propaganda perfectly by asserting that “the return of military veterans facing significant challenges reintegrating into their communities could lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists capable of carrying out violent attacks.”

This plot hatched over a decade ago to frame veterans as the new terrorist Boogeyman is being played out in the theater of reality as more instances of staged attacks may be looming in the not so distant future. With intentions on destroying the 2nd Amendment, along with demonizing US troops have obvious implications. Former military are trained in tactical operations and could pose a threat to the marital law scenario that the DHS is planning on implementing just in time for the collapse of the US dollar.

Update: Rand Paul’s Son, William Hilton Paul, Charged With Assaulting Flight Attendant

(IBITimes) -William Hilton Paul, the 19-year-old son of Kentucky Senator Rand Paul and the grandson of former presidential candidate Ron Paul, is being accused of physically assaulting a female flight attendant during a flight last weekend, the Charlotte Observer reported.

 Rand Paul’s Son, William Hilton Paul, Charged With Assaulting Flight Attendant [PHOTO]

(Photo: Police Handout)
William Paul, the 19-year-old son of Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, was arrested on charges of underage drinking and public intoxication last week; since then, news outlets have reported that Paul was also charged with assaulting a flight attendant.

(Photo: Police Handout)
William Paul, the 19-year-old son of Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, was arrested on charges of underage drinking and public intoxication last week; since then, news outlets have reported that Paul was also charged with assaulting a flight attendant.
 

The publication said the Charlotte-Mecklenberg police confirmed that Paul had been charged with a misdemeanor assault on a female by “aggressive physical force” on Saturday.

Paul was arrested at Charlotte Douglas International Airport in North Carolina last Saturday on drinking-related offenses as his father prepared to leave the country for a highly publicized trip to Israel.

 

The teenager was initially charged with consuming alcohol underage, disorderly conduct, and being intoxicated and disruptive, all of which are misdemeanor offenses, but initial reports did not mention the assault charge, and law enforcement officials also did not initially discuss whether Paul had been drinking on the plane.

Police Lt. Blake Hollar from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s office said that Paul “was possibly served alcohol on the flight.”

In an interview with the Charlotte Observer, Lt. Shawn Crooks said that the four charges had all been filed against Paul on Jan.5 and that he was not sure why the media had not reported the assault charge. However, the assault charge does not appear on the Sherriff’s Office’s public database.

Records showed that police made the arrest at 10:49 a.m., shortly after his flight landed at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport. Media outlets reported that Paul was released at about 11:15 pm on $750 bail.

Although Sen. Rand Paul has not specifically addressed his son’s arrest, his senior communications director, Moira Bagley, released a statement on Sunday afternoon, saying, “Sen. Paul is a national public figure and subject to scrutiny in the public arena; however, as many parents with teenagers would understand, his family should be afforded the privacy and respect they deserve in a situation such as this.”

A call to the Charlotte-Mecklenberg County Sheriff’s office had not yet been returned at the time this story was published.

5 chilling new ways police violate your rights

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(Salon) -One of the most disturbing trends in law enforcement in recent years is the hyper-paramilitarization of local police forces. Much of the funding for tanks for Fargo’s hometown cop shop comes from the Department of Homeland Security. The feds have a lot of money to throw around in the name of preventing terrorism, and municipalities want to get that money. As anyone who has done budgeting knows, the best way to ensure your funding stays high is to request a lot of money and spend it all.

As a result, every year the police get more tools, gadgets, weapons, and surveillance technologies that, whatever their stated purpose, serve to give cops greater capabilities to curtail the rights of anyone unlucky enough to be standing in their path.

We were going to list these in order from least to most creepy, but that proved far too challenging. So here are some cop tools you may not be familiar with, in no particular order.

1. Shock-cuffs.These made a splash in late 2012 when it was reported that Scottsdale Inventions had submitted a patent for metal handcuffs capable of delivering “high-voltage, low amperage shocks to disrupt a person’s voluntary nervous system,” much like Tasers. Depending on the model used, the handcuffs could shock a detainee at the will of his captor, or if the detainee wanders past a certain border – like an invisible fence for dogs.

Even more disturbing is the potential to arm the handcuffs with needles capable of injecting medications, sedatives or any number of liquid or gas substances into the detainee. But don’t worry – some models may include a flashing light or sound-alert to warn the person that a shock is about to happen.

2. Rapid DNA analysis. One of the main stories of the future of policing will be cops’ ability to collect biometric data in the field, instead of at the downtown precinct. EFF reported earlier this month on a potentially troubling technology called Rapid DNA analysis, being developed by contractors with the federal government. The machine, which is about the size of a laser printer, has the ability to collect, analyze and catalog your DNA onsite in about 90 minutes.

The stated purpose of the technology is to help identify family relationships between refugees, which could be beneficial if used in limited ways. According to EFF, however, the US Citizenship and Immigration agency suggests “that DNA should be collected from all immigration applicants—possibly even infants—and then stored in the FBI’s criminal DNA database.” As with all data collection in the US, the wrench only goes one way, and once local police forces obtain this technology the potential for abuse is huge.

3. Mobile fingerprinting. Police forces across the country have become enamored of smart phone-sized fingerprint scanners. The police use the devices to scan two fingers of the suspect and transmit the data via Bluetooth to the officer’s laptop in his cruiser. The laptop then checks the image against criminal databases for a match.

The ACLU of Washington is concerned that the devices could be used to collect fingerprints, not simply scan them, though Seattle police insist they don’t keep the scanned fingerprints.

4. Iris scans.When I was arrested covering Occupy in December 2011, a livestreamer who was an old hat at political arrests warned me about the iris scan. Beginning in 2010, the NYPD started scanning arrestees’ irises on intake and immediately prior to arraignment. The stated purpose of these scans is to ensure that the person brought before the judge is the right one (there were some instances of mistaken identity), but in practice the scope of the iris scan is much broader. It’s plainly an example of collecting biometric data of people who haven’t been convicted of a crime, as well as a mechanism to punish those who refuse the scan.

The scan isn’t mandatory, but as I wrote about my own experience, “if you don’t submit to it, you will be punished.” In my case, I refused the scan on intake, but was told I would be held in jail for an extra night if I didn’t allow my eyes to be scanned before I saw the arraignment judge, despite the fact that there was no initial scan to compare it with.

This technology, like DNA analysis and fingerprinting, can now be used in the field. BI2 Technologies has developed a device that slides over an iPhone and allows officers to scan a suspect’s face and eyes, and then check that scan against a criminal database. Critics say the tool is problematic because it can scan a person’s face from up to four feet away, possibly without their awareness. Beyond that, there is a disturbing partnership emerging between BI2 Technologies, the FBI and local police forces, with reports that the FBI plans to launch an iris national database in 2014.

5. License plate recognition.It’s not just your eyeballs and fingertips that law enforcement wants to scan. Relatively new technology called license plate recognition allows police to run thousands of tags a day, all while just driving around. Cameras mounted on cop cars constantly scan the area and check plates against databases, and alert the officer if there’s a match.

A Long Beach police officer describes the scope of LPR this way:

In our case we are running multiple databases — we have “wanted felony vehicles,” “be on the lookout,” “24 hour hotsheet,” “wanted by detectives,” “LA County warrants,” and our gang unit. In addition to this we have “stolen vehicles,” which are available to everybody in the state. Currently in our database we have 24,000,000 plus reads.

Just like the other surveillance tools, police departments expect use of LPR to increase in the coming years. According to a Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) survey, “71 percent of responding agencies already have LPRs,” though often just on a handful of cruisers. Tellingly, “almost every police agency expects to acquire or increase their use of LPRs in coming years, and that five years from now, on average they expect to have 25 percent of their cars equipped with LPRs.”

As Kevin Goztola notes, this kind of technology isn’t inherently inappropriate, but without strict regulation many innocent people could be surveilled unconstitutionally. The Wall Street Journal recently reported on a US person who discovered through requests for public records that his daily routine had been monitored automatically. The WSJ concludes, “The rise of license-plate tracking is a case study in how storing and studying people’s everyday activities, even the seemingly mundane, has become the default rather than the exception.”

When it comes to drones, the future is wide open. From proposed surveillance in Seattle to assisting arrests in North Dakota, police drones are here and they aren’t going anywhere. NYPD commissioner Ray Kelly recently told a crowd that his department was “looking into” using drones to surveil political protests, though “a drones program is not being actively pursued at this time.” Recently obtained FOIA documents, however, show that the NYPD counter-terrorism unit may be in the early stages of developing the use of drones.

As drones get smaller, more versatile and increasingly capable of behaving “autonomously,” it’s not difficult to imagine a time in the future when drone surveillance is integrated with LPR technology, all in the name of increased security.

Illusion of Choice By George Carlin, Ron Paul, and Judge Napolitano

18 Facts That Prove That Piers Morgan Is Flat Out Lying About Gun Control

 

Piers Morgan - Photo by Nan Palmero

(Michael Snyder) -Piers Morgan is getting on television every night and flat out lying to the American people about gun control. Nearly every statistic that he quotes is inaccurate and he fails to acknowledge a whole host of statistics that would instantly invalidate the arguments that he is trying to make. Yes, the UK has a lower gun murder rate than the United States does, but what Piers Morgan fails to tell you is that the overall rate of violent crime in the UK is about 4 times higher than it is in the United States. A woman in the UK is not allowed pull out a gun to protect herself against a gang of potential rapists. So perhaps that explains why the UK has about 125 percent more rape victims per 100,000 people than the United States does. While UK newspapers are declaring that the UK has become the “violent crime capital of Europe”, crime rates in the United States have actually fallen dramatically over the past 20 years. This was also a time period during which gun laws became much less restrictive in the United States. Today, murder rates in the U.S. are generally far higher in cities that have very strict gun control laws (such as Chicago) than they are for the general population. The cold, hard numbers make it clear that when there are more guns there is less crime, but hardcore leftists such as Piers Morgan are absolutely obsessed with gun control and Morgan continues to relentlessly attack the 2nd Amendment night after night. We need to start pointing out that he is not telling the truth.

The following are 18 facts that prove that Piers Morgan is flat out lying about gun control…

#1 The UK has approximately 125 percent more rape victims per 100,000 people each year than the United States does.

#2 The UK has approximately 133 percent more assault victims per 100,000 people each year than the United States does.

#3 Piers Morgan continues to insist that there are more than 11,000 gun murders in the United States every year. But that is flat out wrong. According to the FBI, there were 8,583 gun murders in the United States during 2011. And as Ben Swann recently pointed out, 400 of those were justifiable homicides by law enforcement and 260 of those were justifiable homicides by private citizens.

#4 The United States is #1 in the world in gun ownership, and yet it is only 28th in the world in gun murders per 100,000 people.

#5 The violent crime rate in the United States actually fell from 757.7 per 100,000 in 1992 to 386.3 per 100,000 in 2011. During that same time period, the murder rate fell from 9.3 per 100,000 to 4.7 per 100,000. This was during an era when gun laws in the United States generally became much less restrictive.

#6 The city of Chicago has some of the strictest gun laws in the United States. So has this reduced crime? Of course not. As I wrote about the other day, the murder rate in Chicago was about 17 percent higher in 2012 than it was in 2011, and Chicago is now considered to be “the deadliest global city“. If you can believe it, there were about as many murders in Chicago during 2012 as there was in the entire nation of Japan.

#7 After the city of Kennesaw, Georgia passed a law requiring every home to have a gun, the crime rate dropped by more than 50 percent over the course of the next 23 years.

#8 Approximately 200,000 women in the United States use guns to protect themselves against sexual crime every single year.

#9 Overall, guns in the United States are used 80 times more often to prevent crime than they are to take lives.

#10 Only about 3.5 percent of the gun murders in the United States are caused by rifles.

#11 According to Gallup, an all-time record 74 percent of all Americans are against a total handgun ban in the United States.

#12 Down in Australia, gun murders increased by about 19 percent and armed robberies increased by about 69 percent after a gun ban was instituted.

#13 When Piers Morgan claims that there are only 35 gun murders in the UK per year, he isn’t exactly being accurate. According to official statistics, there were 59 gun murders in the UK in 2011. It is also important to keep in mind that gun crime was already super low even before the gun ban in the UK was instituted, and that a 2009 article in The Telegraph declared that gun crime had doubled over the past decade even though it is widely acknowledged that crime statistics in the UK are massively underreported.

#14 The UK has the fourth highest burglary rate in the EU.

#15 The UK has the second highest overall crime rate in the EU.

#16 A 2009 article in The Telegraph had this stunning headline: “UK is violent crime capital of Europe“.

#17 Despite the very strict ban on guns in the UK, the truth is that the UK is a far more violent society than the United States is. In one recent year, there were 2,034 violent crimes per 100,000 people in the UK. In the United States, there were only 466 violent crimes per 100,000 people during that same year. Do we really want to be more like the UK?

#18 According to Gun Owners of America, the governments of the world slaughtered more than 170 million of their own people during the 20th century. The vast majority of those people had been disarmed by their own governments prior to being slaughtered.

But you won’t hear many of these statistics on the mainstream news, will you?

Federal judge orders NYPD to stop using stop-and-frisk tactic in the Bronx

Michael Bloomberg

New York mayor Michael Bloomberg has defended this police department’s stop-and-frisk searches. Photograph: Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

(Guardian) – A federal judge has dealt a significant blow to the New York police department’s controversial stop-and-frisk policy, declaring that officers had “systematically” engaged in unconstitutional activity by searching residents outside thousands of private apartments in the city.

Manhattan federal court judge Shira Scheindlin said the NYPD must immediately halt the practice of conducting trespass stops at certain buildings in the Bronx neighbourhood. Campaigners said the policy unfairly targeted black and Latino householders who were placed “under siege” in their homes.

“While it may be difficult to say when precisely to draw the line between constitutional and unconstitutional police encounters such a line exists, and the NYPD has systematically crossed it when making trespass stops outside buildings,” Scheindlin wrote in a 157-page ruling.

Scheindlin said that a lack of training within the NYPD may have contributed to the practice of unlawful stops outside buildings that formed part of the clean halls program, under which landlords can give police officers the right to patrol in and around private residential buildings.

“The evidence of numerous unlawful stops at the hearing strengthens the conclusion that the NYPD’s inaccurate training has taught officers the following lesson: stop and question first, develop suspicions later,” she wrote in her decision.

Operation Clean Halls, introduced in the Bronx in the 1990s, has the aim of combating illegal activity in thousands of apartment buildings in high-crime areas. But the New York Civil Liberties Union reported that in a subset of Clean Halls buildings, police officers conduct regular floor-by-floor sweeps, called vertical patrols, and engage in particularly aggressive stop-question-frisk-and-arrest practices.

The ruling comes after a long-running campaign by New York activist groups including the NYCLU. Opponents argued that the NYPD’s clean halls program led to officers stopping and arresting residents outside their own buildings.

“Today’s decision is a major step toward dismantling the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk regime,” said NYCLU executive director Donna Lieberman.

“Operation Clean Halls has placed New Yorkers, mostly black and Latino, under siege in their own homes in thousands of apartment buildings. This aggressive assault on people’s constitutional rights must be stopped.”

Scheindlin’s ruling came in the case of Ligon v City of New York, filed by the New York Civil Liberties Union, the Bronx Defenders, LatinoJustice PRLDEF and the Shearman & Sterling law firm.

Jaenean Ligon had complained that she and her sons were stopped by police on multiple occasions outside their apartment building in the Bronx without cause. The ruling is the one of a number of stop-and-frisk cases that have been brought against the NYPD.

Ron Paul: New Year’s Resolutions for Congress

 

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(Ron Paul) -As I prepare to retire from Congress, I’d like to suggest a few New Year’s resolutions for my colleagues to consider.  For the sake of liberty, peace, and prosperity I certainly hope more members of Congress consider the strict libertarian constitutional approach to government in 2013.

In just a few days, Congress will solemnly swear to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against ALL enemies, foreign and domestic.  They should reread Article 1 Section 8 and the Bill of Rights before taking such a serious oath.  Most legislation violates key provisions of the Constitution in very basic ways, and if members can’t bring themselves to say no in the face of pressure from special interests, they have broken trust with their constituents and violated their oaths. Congress does not exist to serve special interests, it exists to protect the rule of law.

I also urge my colleagues to end unconstitutional wars overseas.  Stop the drone strikes; stop the covert activities and meddling in the internal affairs of other nations. Strive to observe “good faith and justice towards all Nations” as George Washington admonished.  We are only making more enemies, wasting lives, and bankrupting ourselves with the neoconservative, interventionist mindset that endorses pre-emptive war that now dominates both parties.

All foreign aid should end because it is blatantly unconstitutional. While it may be a relatively small part of our federal budget, for many countries it is a large part of theirs–and it creates perverse incentives for both our friends and enemies. There is no way members of Congress can know or understand the political, economic, legal, and social realities in the many nations to which they send taxpayer dollars.

Congress needs to stop accumulating more debt. US debt, monetized by the Federal Reserve, is the true threat to our national security. Revisiting the parameters of Article 1 Section 8 would be a good start.

Congress should resolve to respect personal liberty and free markets. Learn more about the free market and how it regulates commerce and produces greater prosperity better than any legislation or regulation. Understand that economic freedom IS freedom.  Resolve not to get in the way of voluntary contracts between consenting adults.  Stop bailing out failed yet politically connected companies and industries. Stop forcing people to engage in commerce when they don’t want to, and stop prohibiting them from buying and selling when they do want to.  Stop trying to legislate your ideas of fairness.  Protect property rights.  Protect the individual.  That is enough.

There are many more resolutions I would like to see my colleagues in Congress adopt, but respect for the Constitution and the oath of office should be at the core of everything members of Congress do in 2013.

Ron Paul: Seeking Total Security Leads to an Orwellian Surveillance State

by Ron Paul

The senseless and horrific killings last week in Newtown, Connecticut reminded us that a determined individual or group of individuals can cause great harm no matter what laws are in place. Connecticut already has restrictive gun laws relative to other states, including restrictions on fully automatic, so-called “assault” rifles and gun-free zones.

Predictably, the political left responded to the tragedy with emotional calls for increased gun control. This is understandable, but misguided. The impulse to have government “do something” to protect us in the wake national tragedies is reflexive and often well intentioned. Many Americans believe that if we simply pass the right laws, future horrors like the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting can be prevented. But this impulse ignores the self evident truth that criminals don’t obey laws.

The political right, unfortunately, has fallen into the same trap in its calls for quick legislative solutions to gun violence. If only we put armed police or armed teachers in schools, we’re told, would-be school shooters will be dissuaded or stopped.

While I certainly agree that more guns equals less crime and that private gun ownership prevents many shootings, I don’t agree that conservatives and libertarians should view government legislation, especially at the federal level, as the solution to violence. Real change can happen only when we commit ourselves to rebuilding civil society in America, meaning a society based on family, religion, civic and social institutions, and peaceful cooperation through markets. We cannot reverse decades of moral and intellectual decline by snapping our fingers and passing laws.

Let’s not forget that our own government policies often undermine civil society, cheapen life, and encourage immorality. The president and other government officials denounce school violence, yet still advocate for endless undeclared wars abroad and easy abortion at home. U.S. drone strikes kill thousands, but nobody in America holds vigils or devotes much news coverage to those victims, many of which are children, albeit, of a different color.

Obviously I don’t want to conflate complex issues of foreign policy and war with the Sandy Hook shooting, but it is important to make the broader point that our federal government has zero moral authority to legislate against violence.

Furthermore, do we really want to live in a world of police checkpoints, surveillance cameras, metal detectors, X-ray scanners, and warrantless physical searches? We see this culture in our airports: witness the shabby spectacle of once proud, happy Americans shuffling through long lines while uniformed TSA agents bark orders. This is the world of government provided “security,” a world far too many Americans now seem to accept or even endorse. School shootings, no matter how horrific, do not justify creating an Orwellian surveillance state in America.

Do we really believe government can provide total security? Do we want to involuntarily commit every disaffected, disturbed, or alienated person who fantasizes about violence? Or can we accept that liberty is more important than the illusion of state-provided security? Government cannot create a world without risks, nor would we really wish to live in such a fictional place. Only a totalitarian society would even claim absolute safety as a worthy ideal, because it would require total state control over its citizens’ lives.

We shouldn’t settle for substituting one type of violence for another. Government role is to protect liberty, not to pursue unobtainable safety. Our freedoms as Americans preceded gun control laws, the TSA, or the Department of Homeland Security. Freedom is defined by the ability of citizens to live without government interference, not by safety. It is easy to clamor for government security when terrible things happen; but liberty is given true meaning when we support it without exception, and we will be safer for it.

‘Abomination’: Rand Paul slams NDAA as bill passes US Senate

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(RT) -The controversial NDAA bill, which allows for the indefinite detention of US citizens, was approved by the Senate despite White House threats to veto the legislation. Republican Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) has decried the law as an “abomination.”
The libertarian Republican voiced his concerns to a conference committee following the decision to give the present version of National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) the go-ahead. Paul cited the committee’s decision to scrap an amendment that would have prohibited the indefinite detention of US citizens suspected of terrorist activities.“It’s [the amendment] been removed because they want the ability to hold American citizens without trial in our country. This is so fundamentally wrong and goes against everything we stand for as a country that it can’t go unnoticed,” Paul told the committee. He went on to condemn the bill as an “abomination” that deprives US citizens of the right to a fair trial.

“When you’re accused of a crime in our country you get a trial, you get a trial by a jury of your peers, no matter how heinous your crime is, no matter how awful you are, we give you a trial,” he said.

Senators in favor of the bill disregarded Paul’s claims, maintaining that the language in the legislation protected Americans’ constitutional right to a trial. They argue that US citizens who affiliate themselves with foreign powers consequently sacrifice their constitutional rights.

Under the contested act, the President reserves the right to jail any US citizen suspected of aiding terrorists or forces hostile to the US and its allies.

Earlier this month, the Senate approved the Feinstein Amendment that specifically prohibited “detention without charge or trial of a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States apprehended in the United States, unless an Act of Congress expressly authorizes such detention.” The exemption of this amendment by Senators removes current safeguards that prevent the president from incarcerating an individual suspected of terrorism.

The Legislation will now go to the White House, where it may be vetoed by President Obama.

“The Administration strongly objects to section 1031’s restrictions on the use of funds to transfer detainees from the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay to foreign countries,” the White House said in a policy statement.

Obama signed the 2012 version of the document into law last September, but included a statement saying that his administration “will not authorize the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens.”

The legislation also stipulates a significant increase in the Pentagon budget, including $88.5 billion for America’s ongoing wars and other operations around the world. The total amount of military spending set out in the new bill is $1.7 billion over what the Obama Administration initially put forward in its 2013 budget.

The House Armed Services Committee has hailed the measures as “an incremental step to address the $46 billion decrease when considering where the president proposed national defense [spending] would be for fiscal year 2013 in last year’s budget.”

List Of House Members Who Voted For HR 4310 NDAA Bill

 

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On December 20 2012 The House Of Dis-Representatives passed the very controversial  HR 4310 NDAA  Bill by a count of 315 to 107.

Language regarding the “indefinite detention of Americans” has NOT been scrubbed from the bill.

If you’re unfamiliar with the magnitude  of this Amendment please read the two articles links below to get  a better idea  of what’s at stake. In the meantime  use the ” yea-nay” list to call your local representative and express your outrage at their unconstitutional voting pattern. Story 1   Story 2

VOTE PARTY REPRESENTATIVE DISTRICT
Alaska
YEA   R Young, Don AK
Alabama
YEA   R Bonner, Jo AL 1st
YEA   R Roby, Martha AL 2nd
YEA   R Rogers, Mike AL 3rd
YEA   R Aderholt, Robert AL 4th
YEA   R Brooks, Mo AL 5th
YEA   R Bachus, Spencer AL 6th
YEA   D Sewell, Terri AL 7th
Arkansas
YEA   R Crawford, Rick AR 1st
YEA   R Griffin, Tim AR 2nd
YEA   R Womack, Steve AR 3rd
YEA   D Ross, Mike AR 4th
Arizona
NAY   R Gosar, Paul AZ 1st
YEA   R Franks, Trent AZ 2nd
YEA   R Quayle, Ben AZ 3rd
YEA   D Pastor, Ed AZ 4th
NAY   R Schweikert, David AZ 5th
YEA   R Flake, Jeff AZ 6th
NAY   D Grijalva, Raul AZ 7th
YEA   D Barber, Ron AZ 8th
California
NAY   D Thompson, Mike CA 1st
YEA   R Herger, Wally CA 2nd
YEA   R Lungren, Daniel CA 3rd
NAY   R McClintock, Tom CA 4th
NAY   D Matsui, Doris CA 5th
NAY   D Woolsey, Lynn CA 6th
NAY   D Miller, George CA 7th
NAY   D Pelosi, Nancy CA 8th
NAY   D Lee, Barbara CA 9th
YEA   D Garamendi, John CA 10th
YEA   D McNerney, Jerry CA 11th
YEA   D Speier, Jackie CA 12th
NO VOTE   D Stark, Pete CA 13th
YEA   D Eshoo, Anna CA 14th
NAY   D Honda, Mike CA 15th
NAY   D Lofgren, Zoe CA 16th
NAY   D Farr, Sam CA 17th
YEA   R Denham, Jeff CA 19th
YEA   D Costa, Jim CA 20th
YEA   R Nunes, Devin CA 21st
YEA   R McCarthy, Kevin CA 22nd
YEA   D Capps, Lois CA 23rd
YEA   R Gallegly, Elton CA 24th
YEA   R McKeon, Buck CA 25th
YEA   R Dreier, David CA 26th
YEA   D Sherman, Brad CA 27th
YEA   D Berman, Howard CA 28th
YEA   D Schiff, Adam CA 29th
YEA   D Waxman, Henry CA 30th
NAY   D Becerra, Xavier CA 31st
NAY   D Chu, Judy CA 32nd
NAY   D Bass, Karen CA 33rd
NO VOTE   D Roybal-Allard, Lucille CA 34th
NAY   D Waters, Maxine CA 35th
NAY   D Hahn, Janice CA 36th
YEA   D Richardson, Laura CA 37th
NAY   D Napolitano, Grace CA 38th
YEA   D Sánchez, Linda CA 39th
YEA   R Royce, Ed CA 40th
YEA   R Lewis, Jerry CA 41st
YEA   R Miller, Gary CA 42nd
YEA   D Baca, Joe CA 43rd
YEA   R Calvert, Ken CA 44th
YEA   R Bono Mack, Mary CA 45th
YEA   R Rohrabacher, Dana CA 46th
YEA   D Sanchez, Loretta CA 47th
NAY   R Campbell, John CA 48th
YEA   R Issa, Darrell CA 49th
YEA   R Bilbray, Brian CA 50th
YEA   R Hunter, Duncan CA 52nd
YEA   D Davis, Susan CA 53rd
Colorado
NAY   D DeGette, Diana CO 1st
NAY   D Polis, Jared CO 2nd
YEA   R Tipton, Scott CO 3rd
YEA   R Gardner, Cory CO 4th
YEA   R Lamborn, Doug CO 5th
YEA   R Coffman, Mike CO 6th
YEA   D Perlmutter, Ed CO 7th
Connecticut
YEA   D Larson, John CT 1st
YEA   D Courtney, Joe CT 2nd
NAY   D DeLauro, Rosa CT 3rd
NAY   D Himes, James CT 4th
NAY   D Murphy, Christopher CT 5th
Delaware
NAY   D Carney, John DE
Florida
YEA   R Miller, Jeff FL 1st
YEA   R Southerland, Steve FL 2nd
YEA   D Brown, Corrine FL 3rd
YEA   R Crenshaw, Ander FL 4th
NAY   R Nugent, Richard FL 5th
YEA   R Stearns, Cliff FL 6th
YEA   R Mica, John FL 7th
YEA   R Webster, Daniel FL 8th
YEA   R Bilirakis, Gus FL 9th
YEA   R Young, Bill FL 10th
YEA   D Castor, Kathy FL 11th
YEA   R Ross, Dennis FL 12th
YEA   R Buchanan, Vern FL 13th
NAY   R Mack, Connie FL 14th
YEA   R Posey, Bill FL 15th
YEA   R Rooney, Thomas FL 16th
YEA   D Wilson, Frederica FL 17th
YEA   R Ros-Lehtinen, Ileana FL 18th
YEA   D Deutch, Ted FL 19th
YEA   D Wasserman Schultz, Debbie FL 20th
YEA   R Diaz-Balart, Mario FL 21st
YEA   R West, Allen FL 22nd
YEA   D Hastings, Alcee FL 23rd
YEA   R Adams, Sandy FL 24th
NO VOTE   R Rivera, David FL 25th
Georgia
YEA   R Kingston, Jack GA 1st
YEA   D Bishop, Sanford GA 2nd
YEA   R Westmoreland, Lynn GA 3rd
NAY   D Johnson, Hank GA 4th
NAY   D Lewis, John GA 5th
YEA   R Price, Tom GA 6th
YEA   R Woodall, Rob GA 7th
YEA   R Scott, Austin GA 8th
NAY   R Graves, Tom GA 9th
YEA   R Broun, Paul GA 10th
YEA   R Gingrey, John GA 11th
YEA   D Barrow, John GA 12th
YEA   D Scott, David GA 13th
Hawaii
YEA   D Hanabusa, Colleen HI 1st
YEA   D Hirono, Mazie HI 2nd
Iowa
NAY   D Braley, Bruce IA 1st
NAY   D Loebsack, David IA 2nd
NAY   D Boswell, Leonard IA 3rd
NAY   R Latham, Tom IA 4th
YEA   R King, Steve IA 5th
Idaho
NAY   R Labrador, Raúl ID 1st
YEA   R Simpson, Mike ID 2nd
Illinois
NAY   D Rush, Bobby IL 1st
YEA   D Lipinski, Daniel IL 3rd
NAY   D Gutiérrez, Luis IL 4th
NAY   D Quigley, Mike IL 5th
YEA   R Roskam, Peter IL 6th
NAY   D Davis, Danny IL 7th
NAY   R Walsh, Joe IL 8th
NAY   D Schakowsky, Jan IL 9th
YEA   R Dold, Bob IL 10th
YEA   R Kinzinger, Adam IL 11th
YEA   D Costello, Jerry IL 12th
YEA   R Biggert, Judy IL 13th
YEA   R Hultgren, Randy IL 14th
NAY   R Johnson, Timothy IL 15th
YEA   R Manzullo, Donald IL 16th
YEA   R Schilling, Bobby IL 17th
VOTE PARTY REPRESENTATIVE DISTRICT
YEA   R Schock, Aaron IL 18th
YEA   R Shimkus, John IL 19th
Indiana
YEA   D Visclosky, Peter IN 1st
YEA   D Donnelly, Joe IN 2nd
YEA   R Stutzman, Marlin IN 3rd
YEA   R Rokita, Todd IN 4th
NO VOTE   R Burton, Dan IN 5th
YEA   R Pence, Mike IN 6th
NAY   D Carson, André IN 7th
YEA   R Bucshon, Larry IN 8th
YEA   R Young, Todd IN 9th
Kansas
NAY   R Huelskamp, Tim KS 1st
YEA   R Jenkins, Lynn KS 2nd
YEA   R Yoder, Kevin KS 3rd
YEA   R Pompeo, Mike KS 4th
Kentucky
YEA   R Whitfield, Ed KY 1st
YEA   R Guthrie, Brett KY 2nd
NAY   D Yarmuth, John KY 3rd
NAY   R Massie, Thomas KY 4th
YEA   R Rogers, Hal KY 5th
YEA   D Chandler, Ben KY 6th
Louisiana
YEA   R Scalise, Steve LA 1st
YEA   D Richmond, Cedric LA 2nd
NAY   R Landry, Jeff LA 3rd
YEA   R Fleming, John LA 4th
YEA   R Alexander, Rodney LA 5th
YEA   R Cassidy, Bill LA 6th
YEA   R Boustany, Charles LA 7th
Massachusetts
NAY   D Olver, John MA 1st
NAY   D Neal, Richard MA 2nd
NAY   D McGovern, Jim MA 3rd
NAY   D Frank, Barney MA 4th
YEA   D Tsongas, Niki MA 5th
NAY   D Tierney, John MA 6th
NAY   D Markey, Ed MA 7th
NAY   D Capuano, Michael MA 8th
NAY   D Lynch, Stephen MA 9th
YEA   D Keating, William MA 10th
Maryland
NAY   R Harris, Andy MD 1st
YEA   D Ruppersberger, Dutch MD 2nd
NAY   D Sarbanes, John MD 3rd
NAY   D Edwards, Donna MD 4th
YEA   D Hoyer, Steny MD 5th
YEA   R Bartlett, Roscoe MD 6th
YEA   D Cummings, Elijah MD 7th
NAY   D Van Hollen, Chris MD 8th
Maine
NAY   D Pingree, Chellie ME 1st
NAY   D Michaud, Michael ME 2nd
Michigan
YEA   R Benishek, Dan MI 1st
YEA   R Huizenga, Bill MI 2nd
NAY   R Amash, Justin MI 3rd
YEA   R Camp, Dave MI 4th
YEA   D Kildee, Dale MI 5th
YEA   R Upton, Fred MI 6th
NAY   R Walberg, Timothy MI 7th
YEA   R Rogers, Mike MI 8th
NAY   D Peters, Gary MI 9th
YEA   R Miller, Candice MI 10th
YEA   D Curson, David MI 11th
YEA   D Levin, Sander MI 12th
NAY   D Clarke, Hansen MI 13th
NAY   D Conyers, John MI 14th
YEA   D Dingell, John MI 15th
Minnesota
YEA   D Walz, Timothy MN 1st
YEA   R Kline, John MN 2nd
YEA   R Paulsen, Erik MN 3rd
NAY   D McCollum, Betty MN 4th
NAY   D Ellison, Keith MN 5th
NAY   R Bachmann, Michele MN 6th
YEA   D Peterson, Collin MN 7th
YEA   R Cravaack, Chip MN 8th
Missouri
YEA   D Clay, William MO 1st
YEA   R Akin, Todd MO 2nd
YEA   D Carnahan, Russ MO 3rd
YEA   R Hartzler, Vicky MO 4th
YEA   D Cleaver, Emanuel MO 5th
YEA   R Graves, Sam MO 6th
YEA   R Long, Billy MO 7th
YEA   R Emerson, Jo Ann MO 8th
YEA   R Luetkemeyer, Blaine MO 9th
Mississippi
YEA   R Nunnelee, Alan MS 1st
YEA   D Thompson, Bennie MS 2nd
YEA   R Harper, Gregg MS 3rd
YEA   R Palazzo, Steven MS 4th
Montana
YEA   R Rehberg, Denny MT
North Carolina
YEA   D Butterfield, G.K. NC 1st
YEA   R Ellmers, Renee NC 2nd
NAY   R Jones, Walter NC 3rd
YEA   D Price, David NC 4th
YEA   R Foxx, Virginia NC 5th
YEA   R Coble, Howard NC 6th
YEA   D McIntyre, Mike NC 7th
YEA   D Kissell, Larry NC 8th
YEA   R Myrick, Sue NC 9th
YEA   R McHenry, Patrick NC 10th
YEA   D Shuler, Heath NC 11th
NAY   D Watt, Mel NC 12th
NAY   D Miller, Brad NC 13th
North Dakota
YEA   R Berg, Rick ND
Nebraska
NO VOTE   R Fortenberry, Jeffrey NE 1st
YEA   R Terry, Lee NE 2nd
YEA   R Smith, Adrian NE 3rd
New Hampshire
YEA   R Guinta, Frank NH 1st
YEA   R Bass, Charles NH 2nd
New Jersey
YEA   D Andrews, Rob NJ 1st
YEA   R LoBiondo, Frank NJ 2nd
YEA   R Runyan, Jon NJ 3rd
YEA   R Smith, Chris NJ 4th
YEA   R Garrett, Scott NJ 5th
NAY   D Pallone, Frank NJ 6th
YEA   R Lance, Leonard NJ 7th
YEA   D Pascrell, Bill NJ 8th
YEA   D Rothman, Steven NJ 9th
NAY   D Payne, Donald NJ 10th
YEA   R Frelinghuysen, Rodney NJ 11th
YEA   D Holt, Rush NJ 12th
YEA   D Sires, Albio NJ 13th
New Mexico
YEA   D Heinrich, Martin NM 1st
YEA   R Pearce, Steve NM 2nd
YEA   D Luján, Ben NM 3rd
Nevada
NO VOTE   D Berkley, Shelley NV 1st
YEA   R Amodei, Mark NV 2nd
YEA   R Heck, Joe NV 3rd
New York
YEA   D Bishop, Timothy NY 1st
YEA   D Israel, Steve NY 2nd
YEA   R King, Pete NY 3rd
YEA   D McCarthy, Carolyn NY 4th
NAY   D Ackerman, Gary NY 5th
YEA   D Meeks, Gregory NY 6th
NAY   D Crowley, Joseph NY 7th
NAY   D Nadler, Jerrold NY 8th
YEA   R Turner, Robert NY 9th
YEA   D Towns, Ed NY 10th
NAY   D Clarke, Yvette NY 11th
NAY   D Velázquez, Nydia NY 12th
YEA   R Grimm, Michael NY 13th
NAY   D Maloney, Carolyn NY 14th
NAY   D Rangel, Charles NY 15th
NAY   D Serrano, José NY 16th
YEA   D Engel, Eliot NY 17th
YEA   D Lowey, Nita NY 18th

 

VOTE PARTY REPRESENTATIVE DISTRICT
YEA   R Hayworth, Nan NY 19th
NAY   R Gibson, Chris NY 20th
NAY   D Tonko, Paul NY 21st
NAY   D Hinchey, Maurice NY 22nd
YEA   D Owens, William NY 23rd
YEA   R Hanna, Richard NY 24th
YEA   R Buerkle, Ann Marie NY 25th
YEA   D Hochul, Kathleen NY 26th
YEA   D Higgins, Brian NY 27th
NAY   D Slaughter, Louise NY 28th
YEA   R Reed, Tom NY 29th
Ohio
YEA   R Chabot, Steve OH 1st
YEA   R Schmidt, Jean OH 2nd
YEA   R Turner, Michael OH 3rd
YEA   R Jordan, Jim OH 4th
YEA   R Latta, Robert OH 5th
YEA   R Johnson, Bill OH 6th
YEA   R Austria, Steve OH 7th
YEA   D Kaptur, Marcy OH 9th
NAY   D Kucinich, Dennis OH 10th
YEA   D Fudge, Marcia OH 11th
YEA   R Tiberi, Pat OH 12th
YEA   D Sutton, Betty OH 13th
YEA   R LaTourette, Steven OH 14th
YEA   R Stivers, Steve OH 15th
YEA   R Renacci, Jim OH 16th
YEA   D Ryan, Timothy OH 17th
YEA   R Gibbs, Bob OH 18th
Oklahoma
YEA   R Sullivan, John OK 1st
YEA   D Boren, Dan OK 2nd
YEA   R Lucas, Frank OK 3rd
YEA   R Cole, Tom OK 4th
YEA   R Lankford, James OK 5th
Oregon
YEA   D Bonamici, Suzanne OR 1st
YEA   R Walden, Greg OR 2nd
NAY   D Blumenauer, Earl OR 3rd
YEA   D DeFazio, Peter OR 4th
YEA   D Schrader, Kurt OR 5th
Pennsylvania
YEA   D Brady, Robert PA 1st
NAY   D Fattah, Chaka PA 2nd
YEA   R Kelly, Mike PA 3rd
YEA   D Altmire, Jason PA 4th
YEA   R Thompson, Glenn PA 5th
YEA   R Gerlach, Jim PA 6th
YEA   R Meehan, Patrick PA 7th
YEA   R Fitzpatrick, Michael PA 8th
YEA   R Shuster, Bill PA 9th
YEA   R Marino, Thomas PA 10th
YEA   R Barletta, Lou PA 11th
YEA   D Critz, Mark PA 12th
YEA   D Schwartz, Allyson PA 13th
NAY   D Doyle, Mike PA 14th
YEA   R Dent, Charles PA 15th
YEA   R Pitts, Joseph PA 16th
YEA   D Holden, Tim PA 17th
YEA   R Murphy, Tim PA 18th
YEA   R Platts, Todd PA 19th
Rhode Island
YEA   D Cicilline, David RI 1st
YEA   D Langevin, Jim RI 2nd
South Carolina
YEA   R Scott, Tim SC 1st
YEA   R Wilson, Joe SC 2nd
YEA   R Duncan, Jeff SC 3rd
YEA   R Gowdy, Trey SC 4th
YEA   R Mulvaney, Mick SC 5th
YEA   D Clyburn, Jim SC 6th
South Dakota
YEA   R Noem, Kristi SD
Tennessee
NAY   R Roe, Phil TN 1st
NAY   R Duncan, John TN 2nd
YEA   R Fleischmann, Chuck TN 3rd
NAY   R DesJarlais, Scott TN 4th
YEA   D Cooper, Jim TN 5th
YEA   R Black, Diane TN 6th
YEA   R Blackburn, Marsha TN 7th
YEA   R Fincher, Stephen TN 8th
NAY   D Cohen, Steve TN 9th
Texas
YEA   R Gohmert, Louis TX 1st
YEA   R Poe, Ted TX 2nd
NO VOTE   R Johnson, Sam TX 3rd
NAY   R Hall, Ralph TX 4th
YEA   R Hensarling, Jeb TX 5th
YEA   R Barton, Joe TX 6th
NO VOTE   R Culberson, John TX 7th
YEA   R Brady, Kevin TX 8th
YEA   D Green, Al TX 9th
YEA   R McCaul, Michael TX 10th
YEA   R Conaway, Michael TX 11th
YEA   R Granger, Kay TX 12th
YEA   R Thornberry, Mac TX 13th
NAY   R Paul, Ron TX 14th
YEA   D Hinojosa, Rubén TX 15th
NO VOTE   D Reyes, Silvestre TX 16th
YEA   R Flores, Bill TX 17th
YEA   D Jackson-Lee, Sheila TX 18th
YEA   R Neugebauer, Randy TX 19th
YEA   D Gonzalez, Charles TX 20th
YEA   R Smith, Lamar TX 21st
YEA   R Olson, Pete TX 22nd
YEA   R Canseco, Quico TX 23rd
NAY   R Marchant, Kenny TX 24th
YEA   D Doggett, Lloyd TX 25th
YEA   R Burgess, Michael TX 26th
YEA   R Farenthold, Blake TX 27th
YEA   D Cuellar, Henry TX 28th
YEA   D Green, Gene TX 29th
YEA   D Johnson, Eddie TX 30th
YEA   R Carter, John TX 31st
YEA   R Sessions, Pete TX 32nd
Utah
YEA   R Bishop, Rob UT 1st
YEA   D Matheson, Jim UT 2nd
YEA   R Chaffetz, Jason UT 3rd
Virginia
YEA   R Wittman, Rob VA 1st
YEA   R Rigell, Scott VA 2nd
YEA   D Scott, Bobby VA 3rd
YEA   R Forbes, Randy VA 4th
YEA   R Hurt, Robert VA 5th
YEA   R Goodlatte, Bob VA 6th
YEA   R Cantor, Eric VA 7th
YEA   D Moran, Jim VA 8th
NAY   R Griffith, Morgan VA 9th
YEA   R Wolf, Frank VA 10th
YEA   D Connolly, Gerald VA 11th
Vermont
NAY   D Welch, Peter VT
Washington
YEA   D DelBene, Suzan WA 1st
YEA   D Larsen, Rick WA 2nd
YEA   R Herrera Beutler, Jaime WA 3rd
YEA   R Hastings, Doc WA 4th
YEA   R McMorris Rodgers, Cathy WA 5th
YEA   D Dicks, Norm WA 6th
NAY   D McDermott, Jim WA 7th
YEA   R Reichert, Dave WA 8th
YEA   D Smith, Adam WA 9th
Wisconsin
YEA   R Ryan, Paul WI 1st
NAY   D Baldwin, Tammy WI 2nd
NAY   D Kind, Ron WI 3rd
NAY   D Moore, Gwen WI 4th
NAY   R Sensenbrenner, James WI 5th
YEA   R Petri, Tom WI 6th
YEA   R Duffy, Sean WI 7th
NAY   R Ribble, Reid WI 8th
West Virginia
YEA   R McKinley, David WV 1st
YEA   R Capito, Shelley WV 2nd
YEA   D Rahall, Nick WV 3rd
Wyoming
NAY   R Lummis, Cynthia WY

Exclusive: Cops, detectives, FBI agents, U.S. soldiers tell Natural News they will not enforce gun confiscation orders

(NaturalNews) In the wake of the recent Sandy Hook shooting, I reached out to my contacts in law enforcement, military and (retired) FBI over the last three days, asking three simple questions:

#1) Do you think Obama will use executive orders to demand nationwide gun confiscation?

#2) If such an order is given, will you or fellow members of your organization enforce it against the citizens? (And if so, how?)

#3) What is the solution to stopping future mass shootings?

I posed these questions to one ex-FBI agent, one retired Sheriff’s deputy, two active duty city police detectives, one retired former police captain of a major U.S. city, two U.S. Army veterans and one USMC veteran, discharged several years ago after two tours in Afghanistan during which he sustained a severe personal injury. For obvious reasons, none of them wish to be identified by name, but their answers below speak to their credibility and authenticity.

Here are their answers.

#1) Will Obama use Executive Order to call for gun confiscation?

The majority of those answering this question told me they did not believe Obama would call for outright gun confiscation. One detective told me, “Obama will probably try to roll out an incremental restriction similar to the ’94 Clinton assault weapons ban.” He would then wait for another mass shooting and use that event to ratchet up the restrictions, I was told.

Only two of the eight people I questioned thought that Obama would call for outright gun confiscation, and one of those believed it would only be a restriction on so-called “assault rifles” but not shotguns or handguns.

Everyone believed that Obama would at minimum call for restrictions on weapon magazine capacity, most likely seeking to limit that to ten rounds per magazine (which is also the current limit in California). I was also told that Obama might attempt to federalize mandatory waiting periods for gun purchases, which already exist in some states but not all.

#2) Will you enforce gun confiscation against the citizens?

On this issue, the answer was resounding and unanimous: NO!

The retired police captain told me that, “Door-to-door confiscation by men and women in blue [i.e. city cops] would be a suicide mission.” If ordered to conduct such gun confiscation actions, many would simply resign on the spot rather than risk their lives in firefights with determined gun owners, he explained. “Our officers are not generally willing to assume the increased risk of such a police action.”

He also explained, importantly, that most police officers have not even been trained to conduct sweeping, community-level weapons confiscation programs. “This goes against all our community outreach efforts where we try to earn the trust of the community.” If cops suddenly became gun confiscation enforcers, trust would break down and policing would become extremely difficult, he explained.

The USMC veteran told me that some of the younger soldiers would go along with gun confiscation if ordered, but that nearly all the older military personnel would likely refuse such orders, even at risk of a court martial. “Some of the guys actually talked about this on deployment. The E-1’s might follow those orders but most of us who managed to stay alive through a couple of tours are too smart for that. You’d have AWOL out the ass. We didn’t sign up to engage Americans as enemy combatants. The answer would be F*%K NO all the way up the chain of command.”

One of the police detectives explained another reason for saying no: “There is no love for gun confiscation in law enforcement. We’re all gun owners and most of us grew up with guns, hunting, target shooting or just collecting. Most of us have gun collections when we’re off duty, and Obama himself isn’t well liked across law enforcement. There’s no way police officers are going to put their lives on the line to go along with an order from a President who really doesn’t have moral authority among cops.”

When I asked what if Bush had called for gun confiscation, and would cops be more likely to comply if the order was given by a Republican, the reply was, “For some guys, yes, because they will listen to a Republican more than a Democrat, but still for rank-and-file officers who are just here collecting a paycheck for a risky job, they’re no way they’re going to engage in what is basically a war action just to keep that job. You can’t pay them enough to pull that kind of duty, gun confiscation.”

I was told by more than one person in this group that any effort by Obama to invoke gun confiscation could lead America to civil war if any real effort were made to enforce it.

#3) What is the solution to stopping mass shootings?

The former police captain explained that the real problem with shootings in his city was, “dirt-cheap handguns” also called “Saturday Night Specials.” As he explained, “People that spend $500 on a nice handgun are almost never the problem when it comes to violent crime. It’s the ones who pick up a junk gun for $50 on the street.”

When I asked him about a practical solution to reduce shootings, he said that in his opinion, “Levying new taxes on all handguns like the tax stamps on class three weapons” would likely prevent new guns from being purchased by most violent criminals, but it wouldn’t take guns out of the hands of criminals who already have them. “These people will break into your car to steal the coins out of your vehicle console. They have no morals, no limits. There’s almost nothing they won’t do to get what they want, which is usually drugs.”

As background, the BATF currently levies a $200 tax stamp for the transfer of any suppressor (silencer), short-barreled rifle, or full-auto weapon, all of which are VERY expensive to acquire and require extensive background checks to legally own.

“Most of the gun violence in our city is drug addicts raiding the homes of other drug addicts. The statistics might appear to show a lot of armed robberies and shootings, but it’s really just a small subset of homes or apartments getting raided over and over again by the same people, the drug dealers.” When I asked what the real drug problem was, he answered without hesitation. “Meth.” Not pot, not marijuana, not even heroin. Meth is the drug that drives violent crime in America’s cities.

The retired Sheriff’s deputy told me that the solution was to, “Arm the teachers. Tear down the ‘gun free zone’ signs and put weapons in the hands of school personnel.”

This opinion was seconded by one of the active-duty police detectives, who said he had actually worked several shootings, but never a mass shooting. “A mass shooting takes time, often several minutes,” he explained. “That’s too fast for the police to arrive on scene, but it’s plenty of time for someone already on location to pursue and engage the active shooter.”

He went on to explain that in the training they have been receiving over the last five years, they have been taught that ANY engagement of an active shooter — even shots that don’t hit the shooter — are now believed among law enforcement to disrupt the shooter and force him to seek cover, during which his massacre is interrupted and delayed. Where police have traditionally been trained to “confirm your sight picture” of weapon sights on the target before pulling the trigger, that training is being modified in some cities where, in the context of a mass shooter firing off a large number of rounds, even returning so-called “suppressing fire” is now considered tactically acceptable until additional backup arrives. The idea now is to go in and engage the shooter, even if you’re just one officer on the scene.

This is contradictory to previous training, and it goes against most cops’ safety rules which include, “always know what is BEYOND your target.” But tacticians in law enforcement are apparently now figuring out that the opportunity cost of NOT shooting back is much greater than the relatively small risk of hitting an innocent victim when laying down suppressing fire.

It is therefore believed, I was told, that even concealed carry principals or other school staff can effectively lay down that “suppressing fire” even if they are not nailing the active shooter. Obviously, this does not mean firing blindly into a crowd, for example. Each tactical situation is unique and requires rapid assessment before pulling the trigger in any direction.

There is an excellent article on all this at PoliceOne.com, covering a hard-hitting presentation by Lt. Colonel Dave Grossman. Here’s a particularly compelling excerpt from the article:

The challenge for law enforcement agencies and officers, then, is to overcome not only the attacks taking place in schools, but to first overcome the denial in the minds of mayors, city councils, school administrators, and parents. Grossman said that agencies and officers, although facing an uphill slog against the denial of the general public, must diligently work toward increasing understanding among the sheep that the wolves are coming for their children. Police officers must train and drill with teachers, not only so responding officers are intimately familiar with the facilities, but so that teachers know what they can do in the event of an attack.

“Come with me to the library at Columbine High School,” Grossman said. “The teacher in the library at Columbine High School spent her professional lifetime preparing for a fire, and we can all agree if there had been a fire in that library, that teacher would have instinctively, reflexively known what to do.

“But the thing most likely to kill her kids — the thing hundreds of times more likely to kill her kids, the teacher didn’t have a clue what to do. She should have put those kids in the librarian’s office but she didn’t know that. So she did the worst thing possible — she tried to secure her kids in an un-securable location. She told the kids to hide in the library — a library that has plate glass windows for walls. It’s an aquarium, it’s a fish bowl. She told the kids to hide in a fishbowl. What did those killers see? They saw targets. They saw fish in a fish bowl.”

Grossman said that if the school administrators at Columbine had spent a fraction of the money they’d spent preparing for fire doing lockdown drills and talking with local law enforcers about the violent dangers they face, the outcome that day may have been different.

Rhetorically he asked the assembled cops, “If somebody had spent five minutes telling that teacher what to do, do you think lives would have been saved at Columbine?”

Conclusion: Civil War?

All my contact in law enforcement are in Southern U.S. states. Opinions may be very different in Northern or Eastern cities such as Chicago, New York or New Jersey.

Nevertheless, even if opinions are different in other cities and states, it is clear to me that law enforcement in Southern states will NOT comply with gun confiscation directives issued by Obama. Obama simply does not have the moral authority — nor the law enforcement support — to pull off such an action. While his political supporters claim he has a “mandate” across America, that’s far from the truth. Obama is widely despised across states like Texas, Florida, Arizona and nearly all of rural America. He only enjoys support in the cities, and primarily in the inner cities.

Also, throughout law enforcement it is widely known that Obama staged Operation Fast & Furious and then got caught. The fact that at least one murder of a U.S. border patrol agent was caused by one of these weapons has made U.S. law enforcement officers realize that the Obama administration is, in many ways, actively working against their interests and even compromising their safety.

The question was raised to me: If Obama is against gun violence, why did he allow thousands of guns to “walk” into the hands of Mexican drug gangs, knowing they would be turned against U.S. law enforcement officers? (Don’t hold your breath waiting for Obama to shed a tear for Brian Terry…)

Conclusion? If Obama were to announce a nationwide gun confiscation order, it might set off a civil war, pitting armed gun owners, cops, veterans and preppers against the completely disarmed, trendy, undisciplined anti-gun inner-city liberals. Gee, I wonder who would win that war?

Is this all a ploy to open the door for UN troops on the streets in America?

Finally, it’s worth considering that civil war may be exactly what Obama wants to cause. It would rip America apart, making way for United Nations troops to invade and seize control, claiming “humanitarian” justification. This could be precisely the action needed to unleash blue helmets across America and push for nationwide disarmament and military occupation.

MEET WND’S ‘MAN OF THE DECADE’

(WND)  Honoring one of the most inspiring and principled political careers in contemporary American politics, culminating in an extraordinary “farewell address” upon his recent announced retirement from the House of Representatives, WND has named U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, as its “Man of the Decade.”

In addition to his primary focus of keeping government within the confines of the Constitution, Paul’s legacy will prominently feature his unwavering dedication to audit – and ultimately abolish – the Federal Reserve in a decades-long effort to restore America’s economy and monetary system to sound, constitutional principles.

He took no prisoners and abided by no political party dictates while trying to push America back to the ideas of its Founding Fathers regarding privacy, responsibility, limited government and freedom.

Paul’s interest in politics developed in 1971, while he was still working as an OBGYN during the Nixon administration, when the United States went off the gold standard.

“It was overall the whole thing about free market economics, individual liberties and the foreign policy … it was my deep conviction that we were [going] in the wrong direction,” he told WND.

Paul’s rise into politics after these revelations was almost an accident.

“I started speaking out just as a candidate, without any expectation of going to Congress. And then I was surprised, the time must have been right, we got attention, and I did wind up in Congress,” he said.

Paul served in the House of Representatives in three different phases, first from 1976-1977, then from 1979-1985 where he ended his term in the House to run for the Senate. He then re-entered the House in 1997 until his recent retirement from politics at the age of 77.

Paul also uniquely was recognized for his first presidential bid in the 1988 presidential election on the Libertarian Party ticket, as well, of course, as his influential role as a GOP presidential candidate in both 2008 and 2012.

Perhaps, though, the most prestigious title Paul earned was “Dr. No,” reflecting his stalwart commitment to the principles of liberty which he advocated by refusing to vote for legislation that went against the Constitution. He described this position on his website by stating that he “will never vote for legislation unless the proposed measure is expressly authorized by the Constitution.”

WND’s “Man of the Decade” award is designated for the man who has, over many years, done the most to represent goodness, perseverance, manliness and character. The recipient should be someone prominent enough to have had an impact on wider American and global opinion. Their successes and failures for the year are to be weighed and considered.

There were no runners-up considered in the category.

In 1987, Paul resigned – for a time – from the Republican Party so he could run for the presidency under the Libertarian Party.

He wrote: “I want to totally disassociate myself from the policies that have given us unprecedented deficits, massive monetary inflation, indiscriminate military spending, an irrational and unconstitutional foreign policy, zooming foreign aid, the exaltation of international banking and the attack on our personal liberties and privacy.”

More recently, back in the Republican Party, Paul’s vehement offensive has been against the Federal Reserve System and what he calls the “warmongering” foreign policy of both the Democrat and Republican parties.

His rise in influence, which helped to create the tea party movement, burst forth initially in 2008 with his presidential campaign bid, and surged again mightily in 2012, when he got 190 delegates at the GOP National Convention.

Though not having won a single state in 2008, in 2012 Paul bounced back and stunned the Republican establishment by carrying delegates from Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, Nevada and Louisiana, placing him in third place.

Paul also upset the Republican establishment by scoring two stunning upsets at the Conservative Political Action Conference presidential straw poll in 2010 and 2011.

Since his presidential bids, Paul has come to be characterized as the “intellectual godfather” of the tea party movement – a title he lightheartedly rejects, but which nonetheless has been perpetuated through his actions both inside and outside of Congress.

He was, during his long career, the “tip of the spear” in a growing global movement toward liberty, where other figures such as Dutch MP Geert Wilders, French MEP Marine Le Pen and UK MEP Nigel Farage have all paid tribute to his work and the principles he advocated in the United States, and carried them throughout the European continent.

He is also the author of six books, “The Case for Gold” (1982), “A Foreign Policy of Freedom” (2007), “The Revolution: A Manifesto” (2008), “Pillars of Prosperity” (2008), “End The Fed” (2009), and “Liberty Defined” (2011).

Despite not being able to secure the GOP nomination for president in 2008 and 2012, Paul was highly revered for his ability to draw crowds far larger than his competitors, including Barack Obama, especially among the college youth.

Though now leaving Congress, Paul’s legacy will continue, many believe, through his son, Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky.

“It was very nice and exciting. Both my wife and I were very pleased,” the senior Paul told WND. “We had five children. They all got involved in politics to some degree, but he obviously was the one that got much more involved. He had studied Austrian economics, so none of us was surprised that he was the one kid who got involved in running.”

“I have to admit that I thought it was a big thing he was taking on, running for the Senate for the first time, but his timing was right, the tea party movement was there and he was able to pull it off.”

So is Rand Paul the “heir” to the torch for liberty in Congress?

“I don’t think in those terms. Obviously our views are going to be very similar, but … it is not going to be a very successful revolution if one person is going to carry it on.”

Tea party and Federal Reserve

Regarding the tea party, Paul told WND, “In the early part of the tea party movement, it was much better than it became later on,” lamenting that much of the spontaneity that was there in the early days has been lost.

Yet he said the tea party was “very beneficial” to the development of grassroots activism in the liberty movement, and added that it was “inevitable” there would be attempts by the GOP establishment to “hijack” the tea party movement.

Nonetheless, for the tea party movement to advance, he said, it needs to “do what they are currently doing and not try and have one person or one group speak for the tea party movement, and I think it should be individual and local by the states and little towns … but they have to maintain an anti-establishment attitude.”

“I think that is where our problem is. The two parties are so much alike, we hear rhetoric that is different, but those of us who have looked at this for a while, we elect one party or the other, policies more or less stay the same.”

He noted specifically that, when it comes to foreign policy, the Federal Reserve System and monetary policy, both parties are virtually identical.

Regarding the Fed, he said the campaign against the quasi-governmental organization that controls America’s monetary system will continue.

“Absolutely, I think it [the resistance] has only begun. Because I see young teenagers coming into my office and telling me that they are reading about [economist Murray] Rothbard, and I say ‘how old are you’ and they say ’14,’ and I say that ‘you are far ahead of where I was at your age.’”

He continued, “All central banks are under attack right now because of … the bankruptcy of the whole world.”

The Federal Reserve System will end, Paul told WND, “when it destroys itself.”

He then likened the coming collapse of the Fed to the collapse of the Soviet Union, because both systems “lived beyond [their] means.”

Socialism is “not functional,” said Paul, and the monetary system “is the same way.”

“It would be great to get an audit,” he said, “because that would hurry up the collapse, because everybody would realize the benefits of the bailouts and where the money has been going.”

The tipping point will come in “a major, major crisis in the bond market, the dollar market and the derivatives market,” said Paul, who added, ominously, “it will be a gigantic” event.

The global markets will dump the dollar at some point, but that is unpredictable, he said, and “could go at any time.” It will be preceded, he added, by an event that will “precipitate a rush out of the dollar.”

Paul eerily concluded that this rush out of the dollar could occur “during this next four years … I would think that something big is going to happen.”

Civil liberties, the NDAA, drones and false-flag attacks

In specific reference to the growing threat to civil liberties – through drone monitors, airport body image scanners, email monitoring and the like, Paul confirmed he shares some of the growing fears of millions of Americans that the nation is becoming a police state.

“I do think so. Essentially getting rid of posse comitatus and saying that the military can arrest citizens and hold them in secret prisons indefinitely,” he said.

He also noted that Americans’ ability to express themselves is becoming much more difficult as other rights fade away. The nation’s citizens now face gross violations of the right to privacy, the right to a fair and speedy trial, the right to a trial by jury and loss of due process, he said.

“Executive orders,” he added, warning of the imposition of a president’s will irrespective of constitutionality, “are already there.”

“They can declare emergencies. The fact that the president issued an executive order and killed [Anwar] al-Awlaki and his 16-year-old son, I mean those executive orders are there. And they can do almost anything they want.”

Americans also are being subject to unprecedented government surveillance, he noted.

There are “umpteen thousand [drones] deployed that are spying on Americans, and it is only beginning.”

As a solution to the growing threat, Paul said, “What I hope and pray for is the technology to come along where there is a good defensive weapon on this – where we as citizens get worried about drones over our house that we might have electronic waves to disable these things.”

Such would be a nonviolent defense against drones, he said.

“Of course, the ones that are causing the most damage to us as a country are the ones that are flying around the world. I think this is going to build up tremendous hatred toward us and when we get on the ropes all that pent-up frustration on us will come out and we will be under attack.”

On liberty – his favorite subject – Paul expressed his fear of rising world government as a key agenda of the American elites.

“That is another trend I think is a very dangerous trend … [where] … there is less control by the people than ever before.”

If a person truly believes in individual liberty, said Paul, one cannot believe in one-world government. He gave examples of how America goes to war under a U.N. banner or NATO resolution and noted that the IMF regulates American monetary policy and that these are all stepping stones towards world government.

Manipulating not just social issues or economic factors, but actual war events, he said, is part of what governments do.

“I think they have [used false-flag events] in the past and they are quite willing to use something that may have not been deliberate. I think Vietnam was a false flag that we later found out our vessels [in the Gulf of Tonkin Incident] were not attacked … and there is a lot of controversy over the Spanish-American War,” he said.

“I think almost always governments lie to their people,” he said

Secession

Regarding the current sentiment toward secession, since Obama’s re-election, Paul said: “I don’t think in the real sense of the word [secession], I talk about de facto secession and nullification, if the federal government becomes totally inept because they can’t pass out any more money, because the money has no value, that I think people might just ignore the government. I think it could be a good thing that way.”

About decisions in Washington state and Colorado to legalize marijuana, he said, “I think nullification is getting a healthy discussion right now” in seeing how states are continuing to defy the federal government.

“One thing that people can do in states … is personal secession,” he said.

Paul cited the developing mass movement of people from California to Texas, over economic and social conditions, and said citizens are moving from oppressive, economically poor states to liberty-loving rich ones. That, he said, is a way to promote the values of liberty.

And he said people soon will be wanting to leave the U.S., because of an oppressive economic atmosphere, but will face obstacles.

“[It] you want to leave even now, there are a lot of restrictions; they don’t want you to pick up and take your money with you. They’ll be cracking down on that,” he said.

The veteran congressman said he doesn’t expect to see another secession movement like what preceded the Civil War, but noted it should be possible.

“The Founders recognized it was an option,” he said. “I think that this principle is a great principle with us.”

2nd Amendment

When asked about the recent shootings in Oregon and Connecticut and how to formulate the best response, Paul said it’s not complicated.

“Last year I introduced a bill to eliminate this concept of gun-free zones. If there is a gun-free zone, this is where all the killing occurs. I would start there, by not limiting the ability of people who are law-abiding citizens to have a gun and defend themselves. I would make sure they are able to. I think the Second Amendment has to be honored and protected. On that same day about 95 people were killed by automobiles, but you don’t hear anybody getting up saying, ‘Oh I think we should eliminate the automobile.’”

“I think it is sad that they politicize this,” he added, “[as though] we have too much freedom to defend ourselves.”

He said while communities with strong firearm ownership don’t have such problems, he expected the politicization of the tragedy to continue, on the part of those who follow Rahm Emanuel’s famous statement, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.”

Regarding Obama’s current push for new congressional gun control, Paul said his hope is that the Second Amendment will prevail.

“There is an unbelievable amount of support for the Second Amendment and … it is not going to be very easy to take our guns away,” he said.

Parting words

Though the picture remains bleak at present for the United States, Paul did say, when asked if America has passed the point of no return, “I don’t think we’re past that point. I think we’re past the point economically [of] expecting Congress to solve their fiscal problems and monetary problems.”

“We’ve already gone off the fiscal cliff,” he said. “But that doesn’t mean we can’t come to our senses.”

The people will have to decide their future, he said.

“I do believe there will be breakdown of law and order, the economic system will be fragile, and the question the American people are going to ask [is], are we going to just tolerate more, bigger government and more totalitarianism.”

Citing his own popularity among the young, he said he holds a lot of hope that there will be a turnaround.

“I never set out to stir up trouble on the campuses, it just seemed to happen. It seemed like the more I went to the campuses, the larger crowds got. That to me was very encouraging, because we talk about revolution, but I am convinced that revolution is still occurring, when you excite a new generation to bring about the changes you want.”

Among issues that will have to be changed are entitlements and welfare.

“They will only be convinced when they government can’t provide,” he said. “This is very important … to see the failure of the transfer system.”

“We should be a giant Switzerland,” he said. “Where we have tremendous free markets, and civil liberties, prosperity and sound money and we will have a greater influence around the world than we do today. We should want people to emulate us, but do it in a voluntary way.

“We should be something new and different and it is available to us.”

He said his foes won’t find him suddenly vanishing, even if he’s not holding an office.

“To me, the solution to all this mess that we have is to believe in and understand what personal liberty is all about. Our lives, and our liberties, come from our Creator – not our government – and the purpose of government should be to protect those liberties,” he said.

“And the follow through on this is private property and sound economic policy, which is sound money. And also a basic moral principle is, you can’t do anything to other people that you wouldn’t want done to you. That means you want to protect your life and liberty, which means you cannot impose yourself on others, whether it’s on a personal basis or an international basis. That to me is the most important thing to do.”

 

Nevada State Senator Introduces Anti-NDAA Legislation to Fight Indefinite Detention

 

(EndTheLie) – Nevada State Senator Don Gustavson introduced a bill in the Nevada State Legislature on Dec. 9, 2012 in an attempt to push back against the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

The bill, BDR 728, also known as the Nevada Liberty Preservation Act, is an effort to preserve the right to due process, formerly protected by the Constitution and later stripped away by Sections 1021 and 1022 of the NDAA (a fact which was confirmed in federal court in a landmark ruling that was quickly overturned in an appeals court).

Both the 2012 and 2013 versions of the NDAA include the indefinite detention provisions. In fact, the newest version makes it even easier to indefinitely detain Americans without charge or trial.

It is unclear at this point if the bill is aimed at fighting the specific version of the NDAA signed into law on December 31, 2011, known as the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012, or the 2013 NDAA.

That being said, the press release from the Nevada chapters of People Against the National Defense Authorization Act (PANDA) solely mentions the 2013 NDAA and the 2013 version has not yet been signed into law.

The press release, authored by Chris Corbett of Reno PANDA, mentions the fact that the 2012 NDAA was “overwhelmingly passed by Congress.” The 2013 NDAA, unlike the 2012 NDAA, passed the Senate unanimously with only two abstentions.

Currently, the 2013 NDAA is being finalized in the Senate and House Armed Services Committees, with Senator Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, announcing that the committee completed their conference on Dec. 18.

“The same day, Rep. Howard McKeon, R-Calif., announced he would file the conference report on behalf of the conferees this evening to accompany the NDAA,” Biomass Magazine reported on Dec. 19.

The anti-NDAA effort in Nevada involved three PANDA chapters working together to gather support for the initiative in the Nevada Legislature.

“We are working hard every day to restore the rights of every Nevadan, and will work tirelessly until we have succeeded,” said Daphne Lee, head of the Clark County PANDA chapter.

“I appreciate the community support backing up our efforts and the courage of those members of our governing bodies who are willing to actively protect the constitutional rights of their constituents,” said Chris Corbett, the Nevada State Coordinator for PANDA.

“We need to restore the Constitutionally protected right to due process for every American,” Corbett added.

“While introduction of BDR 728 marks a major milestone, the group has also made significant progress at the City and County levels,” stated Corbett’s press release.

In addition, the press release adds that in the first quarter of 2013, efforts to nullify the NDAA will be on the agenda for both the Washoe County Commission and the Reno City Council.

While these aren’t efforts carried out at the national level, they are still vitally important, especially since attempts to shut down the legislation in federal courts have already been shot down, as mentioned above.

You can keep track of various efforts to nullify the NDAA across the United States thanks to the resources provided by the Tenth Amendment Center.

NDAA Indefinite Detention Provision Mysteriously Stripped From Bill

Indefinite Detention Provision Mysteriously Stripped From Bill

Posted: 12/18/2012  9:03 pm EST  |  Updated: 12/19/2012 11:31 am EST

Ndaa Indefinite Detention

WASHINGTON — Congress stripped a provision Tuesday from a defense bill that aimed to shield Americans from the possibility of being imprisoned indefinitely without trial by the military. The provision was replaced with a passage that appears to give citizens little protection from indefinite detention.

The amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013 was added by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), but there was no similar language in the version of the bill that passed the House, and it was dumped from the final bill released Tuesday after a conference committee from both chambers worked out a unified measure.

It declared that “An authorization to use military force, a declaration of war, or any similar authority shall not authorize the detention without charge or trial of a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States apprehended in the United States, unless an Act of Congress expressly authorizes such detention.”

The provision sparked a heated debate in the Senate, but ultimately passed by a wide majority with both supporters and opponents of U.S. terrorist detention practices voting for it, citing differing interpretations. Feinstein offered the amendment to clarify a part of the 2012 NDAA that for the first time codified the ability of the military and White House to detain terrorism suspects.

Spokespeople for Senate committee leaders did not immediately answer why the amendment was stripped, but pointed to the language that replaced it:

Nothing in the Authorization for Use of Military Force (Public Law 107–40; 50 U.S.C. 1541) or the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (Public Law 112–81) shall be construed to deny the availability of the writ of habeas corpus or to deny any Constitutional rights in a court ordained or established by or under Article III of the Constitution to any person inside the United States who would be entitled to the availability of such writ or to such rights in the absence of such laws.

The new provision appears to do little, because the Supreme Court has already declared that the writ of habeas corpus — requiring that someone be presented to a judge — applies to all people. The more difficult part of whether people deserve a trial remains unsettled, and the new provision does not appear to resolve it.

“This language doesn’t do anything of substance,” said Raha Wala, a lawyer in the law and national security program of Human Rights First. “It doesn’t ban indefinite detention within the United States or change anything about existing law.”

Feinstein said she was not pleased that her attempt to at least shield citizens and legal residents was stripped.

“I was saddened and disappointed that we could not take a step forward to ensure at the very least American citizens and legal residents could not be held in detention without charge or trial,” Feinstein said. “To me that was a no-brainer.”

Nevertheless, many activists who oppose indefinite detention were not all that enamored with her amendment because some felt it asserted that Congress had the right to make laws requiring detention of citizens. Others believed it failed the test of constitutionality because the Constitution specifies its protections extend to all people, not just citizens. It also did not address terror suspects captured overseas.

The White House had threatened to veto both the House and Senate versions over numerous other provisions included in the legislation. Among them were restrictions on the executive’s ability to transfer prisoners from the prison for terrorist suspects at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The White House did not immediately answer questions about whether the threats stood.

Whose Government, Whose President, Whose “People”? – That’s the Real Question

 

people

(Boiling Frogs Post) – Immediately after my recent interview at RT I began to receive hate-filled and ignorance-ridden e-mails and comments regarding one of my comments. Here is that comment: “I rather call him Mr. Obama since he is not my president.” Oh, according to these ignoramuses, saying that made me disrespectful, out of touch with reality, Un-American, and much worse.

Usually I don’t waste time and energy engaging in unending and unproductive communication. The blogosphere is filled with hollow discussions like that – really not even ‘discussions.’ More like getting wasted in a zombie-wonderland. In a way, it is a great benefit to the establishment- have people eat each other, spend their time and energy on trivial semantics, and lose sight of real ‘issues and discussions.’

However, I believe a certain aspect of this latest attack is worthy of a brief commentary post. I also believe it is good for me to get a few things straight on how I view and feel about certain things. Sure, as always, being straight about ‘things’ will royally anger some (bye-bye a few subscribers, twitter followers, and Facebook followers). And as surely, my strong stand on my views will garner support and strong nods from some (hello new subscribers, twitter followers and Facebook friends). Either way, by now, after so many years, you must know that I am neither after those kinds of approval or scandal-raising adversaries. I just say it as is- as I view and believe.

As most Americans are brought up to believe, as those first-generation immigrants were taught and told; one of our nation’s greatest marketing slogans has been the concept of a ‘Government of the People, by the People, for the People.’ It is a great notion. It is a wonderful concept. Yet, if you have a brain, eyes, ears, and a nose, you know it is a fantastical fantasy. Despite the marketing and mass ignorance, when push comes to shove, even the majority will tell you that this is not the case. They may not articulate and express it publicly, but hey, just check out the findings of hundreds of surveys out there, and see where the majority stands when it comes to viewing those in high offices and their trust and confidence in them- Congress, White House, and all the bureaucrats ‘up’ there. If I am not mistaken, for the last several years less than 25% have shown confidence or trust in the government.

I know, I am fully aware of the contradiction here: Yet, these same ‘people’ go out every other year and cast their vote for one of the two evils presented to them by the Evil-the-Grande establishment. They cast their vote knowing that neither evil will ever represent them. Then they come back and express their view on a congress that doesn’t represent them or stand for their interests, an executive that is working against their interests and is corrupt … It is a ludicrous and vicious cycle that keeps repeating itself.

The majority of the people in our nation do not feel responsible for the tens of thousands of civilian deaths (babies, nanas and pregnant mothers) due to our imperialistic wars. After all, they did not actually go out and kill them. According to them it is ‘THE’  government. And listen carefully, when they shrug it off as something they don’t have responsibility for or a part in, they say ‘THE’ government.’ They never say ‘MY’ government.

The majority of the people, if you were to ask them directly about sadistically torturing people, they would say it is not a good thing or that it is terrible, and that they wouldn’t engage in such practices. They would say ‘THE’ government or a ‘certain’ government evil is the responsible party in those sadistic mayhems.

The majority of our citizens would tell you that they did not have a say in a decision to bailout and reward big bad financial institutions with billions of their hard-earned dollars. They did not agree with it. They did not give their permission. It was ‘THE’ government or ‘THE’ president responsible for that awful deed.

I can list hundreds of examples. I can make the case with thousands of illustrations. In every case what we’ll witness is a notion of a government totally different than the one heavily advertised and marketed. It is ‘THE’ government: far from a “government of the people, by the people, for the people.” Same goes for the string-attached puppets placed in various nooks and crannies of this government.

I accept responsibility for the monstrosities committed by the government of my nation: I stand up and speak out against those actions. I fight against ‘it’. I fight ‘it’ for my nation, for me and for my people. It is my nation, but this is NOT my government; nor is Mr. Obama my president.

How about “People”: The People vs. My People

The next logical question in this discussion I am having here has to do with the notion of ‘people.’ What do we mean by ‘people’? What do ‘I’ mean? Are we talking about everyone? Are we referring to the majority? Whose people? Who do we consider our people?

Several hundred years ago people from different nations made their way to this country, where they intended to make it their home-their country. They used to have their countries.  They had one or another form of government. They had their ‘people’ as well. They did not perceive their home countries’ governments as ‘theirs.’ The kings aka governments did not represent them or their interests. Those governments were not theirs. Obviously the majority of ‘the people’ of their home countries were not ‘their people’ either. Those kings would not have continued to rule and hold on to their  crowns (seats) if the majority of the people there were ‘their people.’ If most people in their home countries were ‘their people’ then they wouldn’t have left their birth-home nations to come over here and make this back-then-new nation their nation.

You see, when the kings or governments are not “of the people by the people for the people” there are only two options: 1- Get rid of the kings-governments and replace them with real people’s representatives; 2- Get the hell out of there, and find a place that you can call your ‘home nation’, where you are not governed by ‘a king’ or ‘the government.’

Today, unlike 300+ years ago there seems to be no newly-discovered or colonized continent or country where one may have a chance for a new beginning with a environment conducive to establishing a liberties-oriented society. That option is out- not only for the lack of choices, but also for its short-time viability, as the current sad state of our nation proves.

That leaves option 1: Get rid of the kings-governments and replace them with real people’s representatives. Now, let me preempt my enemies with a couple of quotes from Thomas Jefferson:

“Every generation needs a new revolution.” – Thomas Jefferson

“The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure.” – Thomas Jefferson

“But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.” – Thomas Jefferson

Now, at this point, what happens when the majority of the people are not really ‘your people?’ Meaning: the majority are in the exact same position and mentality of the majority hundreds of years ago in the settlers’ home countries- willing to take sh.., living blindly and deafly and unfeelingly under the kings aka governments.

This is what I mean by going further and examining the notion of ‘people.’ There are ‘people’ or ‘the people’ and then there are ‘my people’ or ‘our people.’ Possibly one of our fallacies preventing putting our activism into real action-gear is this futile expectation of receiving support from the majority. Before I go any further let me preempt our enemies one more time with one of my all-time favorite quotes:

“It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people’s minds” – Samuel Adams

When I refer to ‘our people,’ ‘my people,’ I mean exactly that: the irate vigilant minority. Let’s get real and confess, and I go first:

Those who shrug off or even support our regime’s imperial pursuits costing hundreds of thousands of innocent lives are not ‘my’ people.

Those who condone incarceration without due process and sadistic torture practices in aptly-called black sites are not ‘my’ people.

Those who view our rape-like fondling in our nations’ airports as a necessary evil for some wrongly-perceived security are not ‘my’ people.

Those who see no violation in having the Stasi-Like government listening to and reading all our private communications and accept it are not ‘my’ people.

In short, I don’t naively subscribe to this too-generally-used notion of ‘the people.’ Don’t take me wrong. I am still for speaking out, informing, and help educating people. I am not giving up on our responsibility to ‘inform.’ In fact, it is not the ‘uninformed,’ but the ‘Accepting-Informed’ people who I really have a problem with. As indicated by the homepage of our website here at Boiling Frogs Post, our hope for future realistically depends on the truly vigilant irate minority.

Now that I have clarified the notion of ‘whose government, whose president, and whose people’ from my standpoint, I have a final message for the ignorant attackers who have taken issue with my statement on the US presidency:

If you believe in and respect the United States Constitution- Bill of Rights, if you are pro liberties, if you believe in the sanctity of human life, if you have any respect for human rights, if you consider sadistic torture a crime against humanity (with no ifs or buts), then, you do not consider this government yours, and that includes all the criminal entities heading it-in action or symbolically. If you do, then you are not a believer, and you are not part of ‘my people.’

U.S. Gov’t Asks Federal Judge to Dismiss Cases of Americans Killed by Drones

 

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(Activist Post) – As Americans mourn the deaths of 20 children and 6 adults in the Newtown, CT tragedy – and the gun control debate has reached a fever pitch – autonomous killing systems are being funded by American taxpayers, and drone strikes continue to kill an increasing number of civilians abroad.

Barack Obama and the U.S. government policy makers have shown an incredible level of hypocrisy before; on the one hand lamenting such senseless deaths as have occurred in “mass shootings” while conducting their own mass killing, torture, and terror campaigns in foreign lands.

A culture of violence can’t have it both ways, though, and the welcoming of drones into American skies by Congress is sure to unleash physical havoc shortly after concerns over surveillance and privacy are dismissed.

As a clear sign of what can be expected, the U.S. government has asked a federal judge to throw out a lawsuit brought by the families of three Americans killed by drone strikes in Yemen. If federal courts rule that these cases are without merit, it will set a dangerous precedent that only the executive branch of government can decide which Americans have a constitutional right to due process, while further enhancing a framework where the government will decide who is fit to be mourned and who should be forgotten

8 Instances Where Shooting Rampages Were Stopped By Gun Carriers

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(LP.Org) Families throughout the nation mourn the horrific deaths of 26 people, including 20 young children, killed Friday during a Newtown, Conn., mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

“It’s impossible to imagine the depths of despair and grief that the victims’ families are experiencing right now,” said Geoffrey J. Neale, Chair of the Libertarian National Committee. “Our hearts go out to every one of them.”

In the immediate aftermath of news surrounding the shootings, pundits and politicians called for new restrictions on firearm ownership, exactly the opposite of the approach needed to combat tragic gun violence in schools.

“We’ve created a ‘gun-free zone,’ a killing zone, for the sickest criminals on the face of the Earth,” said R. Lee Wrights, vice-chair of the Libertarian Party. “We’ve given them an open killing field, and we’ve made the children of this country the victims.”

Wrights pointed out that merely the knowledge that armed people will be present acts as a deterrent for would-be shooters.

“They’re not going to walk into a police station, and why not? Because that’s where the guns are,” he said.

The Federal Gun Free Schools Zone Act prohibits carrying firearms on school grounds in most cases, effectively criminalizing the right to self-defense in places filled with the most vulnerable citizens. Without that federal prohibition, adults working at the school would have been free to defend themselves, very possibly saving the lives of many of the young children and adults who were slain in this horrific tragedy.

“We must stop blinding ourselves to the obvious: Most of these mass killings are happening at schools where self-defense is prohibited,” said Carla Howell, executive director of the Libertarian Party. “Gun prohibition sets the stage for the slaughter of innocent children. We must repeal these anti-self-defense laws now to minimize the likelihood they will occur in the future and to the limit the damage done when they do.”

Responsible gun owners can and do prevent mass shootings from occurring and escalating.
A 1997 high school shooting in Pearl, Miss., was halted by the school’s vice principal after he retrieved the Colt .45 he kept in his truck.
A 1998 middle school shooting ended when a man living next door heard gunfire and apprehended the shooter with his shotgun.
A 2002 terrorist attack at an Israeli school was quickly stopped by an armed teacher and a school guard.
A 2002 law school shooting in Grundy, Va., came to an abrupt conclusion when students carrying firearms confronted the shooter.
A 2007 mall shooting in Ogden, Utah, ended when an armed off-duty police officer intervened.
A 2009 workplace shooting in Houston, Texas, was halted by two coworkers who carried concealed handguns.
A 2012 church shooting in Aurora, Colo., was stopped by a member of the congregation carrying a gun.
At the recent mall shooting in Portland, Ore., the gunman took his own life minutes after being confronted by a shopper carrying a concealed weapon.

For several years after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, gun prohibitionists blocked pilots from carrying firearms. But after it became undeniable that guns are an essential line of defense against hijackers and other terrorists when the lives of innocent passengers are at stake, Congress finally passed legislation allowing it.

It’s time to take the same approach with teachers, school administrators, and security guards, who should be allowed to carry the tools necessary to protect the students in their care. It’s time to put an end to gun-free zones and make it much easier for responsible adults to arm, train, and protect themselves and the people they love from the violent criminals who seek to harm them.

“You can’t depend on somebody else to take care of your own life for you,” Wrights said. “It’s too precious to put it into the hands of somebody else, particularly when the seconds count.”

The Libertarian Party Platform on Self-Defense states: “The only legitimate use of force is in defense of individual rights — life, liberty, and justly acquired property — against aggression. This right inheres in the individual, who may agree to be aided by any other individual or group. We affirm the individual right recognized by the Second Amendment to keep and bear arms, and oppose the prosecution of individuals for exercising their rights of self-defense. We oppose all laws at any level of government requiring registration of, or restricting, the ownership, manufacture, or transfer or sale of firearms or ammunition.”

The Psy-Ops War on Preppers

(The Organic Prepper) -First of all, where is the headquarters of this “Doomsday Preppers Movement” I’ve been reading about?  And where can I sign up? I didn’t realize there was an organized movement, one deserving of capital letters.  Who is the leader of this “movement”?  I’d like to meet him (or her) immediately!

The propaganda machine is not only going after guns in the wake of the terrible tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School – this has become a two-for-the-price-of-one crisis, allowing the government and media to yet again, demonize preppers.

Psychological Warfare: Various techniques are used, by any set of groups, and aimed to influence a target audience’s value systems, belief systems, emotions, motives, reasoning, or behavior. It is used to induce confessions or reinforce attitudes and behaviors favorable to the originator’s objectives, and are sometimes combined with black operations or false flag tactics. Target audiences can be governments, organizations, groups, and individuals.

Yesterday the mainstream media began churning out articles about Nancy Lanza, the mother of the shooter, Adam Lanza.  When you read the following quotes, ask yourself: “How many of these comments could describe ME?”

A few descriptive quotes:

  • Nancy was a member of the Doomsday Preppers movement, which believes people should prepare for end of the world. (Riehl World View)
  • According to reports, Nancy Lanza was a so-called ‘prepper’, a part of the survivalist movement which urges individuals to prepare for the breakdown of society by training with weapons and hoarding food and other supplies.  ( The UK Independent)
  • Reports are starting to emerge of the troubled young man and his unusual upbringing.  (Yahoo)
  • Dan Holmes, owner of a landscaping firm who worked on the family’s home, said she was an avid gun collector: ‘She told me she would go target shooting with her kids.’ (UK Daily Mail)
  • Marsha Lanza described Nancy as ‘self-reliant’.( The UK Independent)
  • He was reportedly homeschooled by his mother, a school principal and gun enthusiast, who wasn’t satisfied with the education her son was receiving.. (Yahoo)
  • As America searches for answers, investigators are turning towards Nancy Lanza’s supposed identification as a survivalist.  (Yahoo)
  • Her former sister-in-law Marsha said she had turned her home ‘into a fortress’.  (UK Daily Mail)
  • Mother of Sandy Hook school gunman Adam Lanza was a ‘prepper’ survivalist preparing for economic and social collapse, say reports. ( The UK Independent)
  • Mrs Lanza is thought to have trained her sons, Adam and Ryan to shoot, even taking them to local ranges. ( The UK Independent)
  • ‘Nancy had a survivalist philosophy which is why she was stockpiling guns. She had them for defense. She was stockpiling food. She grew up on a farm in New Hampshire. She was skilled with guns. We talked about preppers and preparing for the economy collapsing.’  (UK Daily Mail)

Gee…they say this stuff like it’s a BAD thing.

Let’s see.

  • Stockpiles (or hoards) food….check.
  • Takes children target shooting….check.
  • Preparing for economic and/or social collapse….check.
  • Serious about home defense….check.
  • Home is well-fortified against criminals….check.
  • Skilled with weapons….check.
  • Survivalist philosophy….check.
  • Self-reliant….check.
  • Believes that we are capable of educating our children at home….check.

Nancy Lanza’s description could apply to nearly any prepper.  Preppers have been cast in an ugly light for quite some time.  We are painted as camo-clad survivalists, clenching a knife in our teeth while unloading an automatic weapon into some real or imagined threat.  After our Rambo-esque rampage, we will crouch in the forest by a campfire, shoveling down an MRE while glaring suspiciously into the dark, a large Katana hunting knife close at hand with which to dispatch the next enemy.

The assault on preppers through the media is becoming more and more focused.  Let’s look at some recent examples.

We were described last month by emergency manager Valerie Lucus-MacEwen as “socially selfish” – even though the existence of prepared people makes her supplies go further to help the unprepared.  In an editorial meant for other emergency managers, Ms. Lucus-MacEwen arrogantly asserted, “You might wonder why someone like me, who has been in the business of encouraging disaster preparedness for a very long time, is so critical of people who are doing just that. It’s because they are being socially selfish – preparing themselves and the hell with everyone else.  Instead of spending time and energy making changes that would benefit the larger community, in their very narrow focus of loyalty they are more concerned about themselves.”

The National Geographic program Doomsday Preppers also has had a lot to do with the demonization of preppers – it’s a full-court press propaganda attack against preppers.  The program finds the most outrageous examples of preparedness possible and edits to make them look foolish.  An article on the American Preppers Network explains the modus operandi:

The show severely skews Preppers in an effort that can be summed up as “making good television”.  This is evident not only through viewing the show itself, but through the format they have built the show around.  Some highlights of that format include:

  • Featuring one Prepper for 15 minutes only, ensuring that you don’t get too comfortable with them or learn very much about them
  • Requiring each guest to pigeon-hole themselves into one thing they are preparing for – almost always a “doomsday” scenario
  • Creating conflict and drama via their “experts” who review the segment and then condemn or condone what the Prepper has done – all within the context of the “one thing” they’re preparing for

Do you really believe that each of the families on that show only focus on one particular scenario?  No – they are portrayed in a way to marginalize the philosophy of preparedness.  We, as preppers, are a threat to the powers that be.

One participant on the show, David Sarti, learned that his appearance could have serious ramifications.  Mr. Sarti “took one for the team” when, only days after the program aired, however, David Sarti was declared “mentally incompetent”….and his guns were seized.  All of them.  Mr. Sarti, who has no criminal record, is no longer allowed to own guns.  He tells his story here.

Apparently, the constitution no longer applies to those who are categorized as preppers.

The accusation of insanity came after he went to see his cardiologist for some chest pains and shortness of breath.  So far, it sounds sane and rational to me.  The cardiologist, Dr. Andre C. Olivier, whose name and contact information I am delighted to publish, had Mr. Sarti held at the hospital for psychiatric evaluation and broke doctor patient confidentiality by contacting the authorities.

Then it really went to hell on a greased slide.  Mr. Sarti, because of his stay in the psychiatric unit, was then declared “mentally incompetent”.  His very large collection of guns was then stolen removed from his possession.  He is no longer allowed to own weapons.

Earlier this month, Maryland resident Terry Porter had his home descended upon by 150 armed federal agents and local police officers. The raid also included helicopters, SWAT crews, armored vehicles and excavation equipment.

His crimes?  He was known as a prepper, he was unhappy with the reelection of Barack Obama, and he owned guns. He “openly admitted being a prepper.”

So, why all the vilification? Why are preppers the new “boogeymen”?  Why are we being pigeonholed as people who homeschool our kids and turn them into mass murderers of elementary school students?

Simple…because we don’t NEED help.  We do not require the assistance of the government.  We don’t need to line up for 5 hours to wait for a paltry bottle of water and an MRE after a hurricane strikes. We don’t call 911 and hide in a closet waiting for the police to arrive.

Preppers threaten the very existence of all of the social safety nets that are set up.  We can’t be easily manipulated by the offer of a free flu shot and a grocery store gift card in exchange for our weapons.  We think critically and don’t automatically accept the programming of the mainstream media, whose job it is to provide people with the opinions that they should hold.  We don’t shovel in the HFCS-laden genetically modified crap, otherwise known as “food”, killing our brain cells and dumbing us down into cattle to be easily led to slaughter.

We are the last bastion of independent self-reliant thinkers.  And the powers that be are very afraid of those who think for themselves, rather than regurgitating the media-presented party line.

I don’t know why Adam Lanza went on a rampage and killed 26 people last week.  But I do know that it wasn’t because his mother was a homeschooling prepper who stored up food and taught him to fire a gun at a paper target.