Antifa: Left Wing Fascism?

Kevin Barrett’s political incorrectness recently got him un-invited from a radio program. Here he argues, “The two biggest factors behind the demise of First Amendment America are the rise of identity politics, and the 9/11-launched “war on terror.” Identity politics has made political correctness into the monster it has become, but “the dirty little secret” the American public is finally realizing, in spite of mainstream media’s deception, is that, “It is not white identity advocates who are instigating the violence at these rallies, but their antifa opponents.”

By Kevin Barrett

On Thursday, March 8, I was informed that my scheduled appearance the next day on Portland’s KBOO community radio had been cancelled by station management—over the strong objections of the host, John Shuck. The reason? Portland’s antifa chapter, led by a graduate student named Alexander Reid Ross, had led a defamation campaign calling me an “anti-Semite,” “holocaust denier,” and “conspiracy theorist” who shouldn’t be allowed to speak.

Since when could mindless insults shout down free and fair debate based on logic and evidence? Since when did America become such a fearful place that non-mainstream ideas had to be silenced rather than refuted?

The two biggest factors behind the demise of First Amendment America are the rise of identity politics, and the 9/11-launched “war on terror.” Identity politics brought political correctness and the fear of offending this or that “disadvantaged” group. 9/11 and the war on terror destroyed America’s self-confidence, led to the shredding of constitutional liberties, and created a toxic atmosphere of fear and hysteria.

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Trump’s “Make America Great Again” (MAGA) agenda was in many respects a reaction against America’s post-9/11 decline. In reaction to the prevailing leftist identity politics, heterosexual, white, working-class males began asserting themselves, often identifying with Trump and MAGA. Trump’s attacks on the U.S. decision to invade Iraq (“the worst decision ever made”) and his incoherent but provocative insinuations questioning the official version of 9/11 resonated with a broad segment of the population that vaguely sensed something in America had gone badly wrong.

Many leftists (as well as much of the centrist establishment) view the rise of the Trump-supporting alt-right as a national emergency. The most extreme among them have joined antifa.

Antifa shows little interest in critiquing or debating its opponents in order to explain why they are wrong. It is dedicated to shutting them down, silencing them, making sure they can’t be heard—using slanderous witch hunts, mindless name-calling, and even violence.

At universities all across America, antifa thugs are physically attacking speakers identified with the alt-right, and even brutalizing audiences who come out to hear them. The Chicago Tribune reported on March 14:

“At Michigan State University last week, anti-fascist protesters marched toward the venue where (Richard) Spencer planned to speak, intent on keeping his supporters out. Fights quickly broke out, and people were shoved to the ground, punched, and pelted with sticks and dirt. Some people wanting to attend Spencer’s speech were forced back. More than 20 people were arrested, most of them people protesting Spencer.”

This is the dirty little secret that is slowly leaking out to the American public: It is not white identity advocates who are instigating the violence at these rallies, but their antifa opponents. This was clearly the case at Charlottesville, where the police shut down the pro-Robert E. Lee statue rally, forced ralliers to exit through an antifa mob that had come primed for violence, and then disappeared as the provocateur-driven riot broke out. (For a detailed analysis of the events in Charlottesville, read Political Theater in Charlottesville, edited by Jim Fetzer and Mike Palecek, available from Moon Rock Books.)

How can self-styled anti-fascists be rioting in the street and attacking people to shut down free speech? Isn’t their behavior . . . well, fascist? After all, fascism is based on using mob violence to shut down opposition and install a tyranny of one party and one opinion that tolerates no dissent.

Antifa’s violent, authoritarian attack on free speech exemplifies the core essence of fascism. Other characteristics of historical fascism include: extreme glorification of the race or nation, scapegoating of internal and external enemies, militarism, and socialism, including an attempt to replace private bank-issued usury currency with national currency. On all but the last of these counts, Zionism represents by far the biggest and most dangerous fascist movement on Earth. Antifa, a subsidiary of Zionism, carries the Zionists’ fascist thuggery into the streets.

As an American loyal to our Constitution, and to our history as a tolerant “melting pot” of different cultures, religions, and worldviews, I am strongly opposed to most aspects of fascism. I loathe intolerance, authoritarianism, censorship, racism, extreme nationalism, militarism, and scapegoating. But I do think some fascists, such as America’s greatest 20th-century poet. Ezra Pound, were right in their critique of usury and their support for overthrowing the dictatorship of the international bankers. And I think much of the so-called alt-right consists of patriotic Americans—not fascists—who are gradually waking up to oppose the global Zionist dictatorship in the making sometimes known as the New World Order.

Oppose fascism; support free speech! I have challenged Alexander Reid Ross to debate me on the nature and history of fascism.  Please urge him to accept my challenge. Email: aross@pdx.edu or Tweet https://twitter.com/areidross.

Kevin Barrett, Ph.D., is an Arabist-Islamologist scholar and one of America’s best-known critics of the War on Terror. From 1991 through 2006, Dr. Barrett taught at colleges and universities in San Francisco, Paris, and Wisconsin. In 2006, however, he was attacked by Republican state legislators who called for him to be fired from his job at the University of Wisconsin-Madison due to his political opinions. Since 2007, Dr. Barrett has been informally blacklisted from teaching in American colleges and universities. He currently works as a nonprofit organizer, public speaker, author, and talk radio host. He lives in rural western Wisconsin.




PC Police Strike

A young woman has been removed from her Florida middle-school teaching job for expressing cultural views online-under a pseudonym-after the PC police at a far-left website made it their mission to get the woman fired. Political correctness had taken on a whole new significance in the U.S., as increasing numbers of Americans lose jobs and reputations due to speaking their minds, regardless of the First Amendment.

By John Friend

A 25-year-old middle-school teacher in Florida has been “removed from the classroom” following controversy sparked by an article published last weekend by the far-left “Huffington Post” commentary website highlighting the teacher’s politically incorrect social media posts and podcast program, it was recently reported.

Dayanna Volitich, who taught social studies at Crystal River Middle School in the Citrus County School District in Florida, used the online pseudonym “Tiana Dalichov” to post on social media, including Twitter, and to host her podcast program called “Unapologetic,” which addressed a number of controversial issues facing America and the wider world in a straightforward, honest manner. On the podcast, which has since been removed from the Internet along with her social media profiles, Ms. Volitich discussed a variety of complex and controversial issues, including mass immigration, state enforced diversity and multiculturalism, educational issues, and related topics.

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Reporters from the Huffington Post went so far as to contact the school, which prompted an internal investigation ultimately resulting in the teacher’s ouster. Other Americans, including this reporter, have been targeted by malicious reporters in recent years in an effort to harm their professional careers and bring damage to their reputations, as was the case with Ms. Volitich.

“On Friday, March 2, 2018 the Citrus County School District was made aware of a concerning podcast by a Huffington Post reporter,” Sandra Himmel, Citrus County School District superintendent, announced on Sunday in an official statement posted on the school district’s Facebook page. “The reporter indicated they believed one of the persons participating in the podcast was a teacher at Crystal River Middle School. The human resources department was notified and an investigation was initiated immediately. The teacher has been removed from the classroom and the investigation is ongoing. Pursuant to Florida statute an open investigation and materials related to it are exempt from public record and cannot be discussed until the investigation is complete.”

Efforts by AFP to contact Ms. Volitich have thus far been unsuccessful.

In the Huffington Post article, the biased, left-leaning outlet published a number of screen shots of tweets “Tiana Dalichov” made in the past in an effort to demonize her and smear her as a “white supremacist” and “racist.” The tweets highlighted by the Huffington Post indicate Ms. Volitich was a critic of the dubious concept known as “white privilege,” an anti-white, Marxist perspective endlessly promoted and disseminated on college campuses and schools across the country. Ms. Volitich was also apparently interested in “the Jewish Question,” with one tweet noting that she was reading Dr. Kevin MacDonald’s book, The Culture of Critique.

In one tweet, which the Huffington Post and other leftists used to hysterically demonize Ms. Volitich and paint her as a radical “white supremacist,” she harmlessly stated: “It isn’t supremacist or hateful to prefer your own people over others.”

The Citrus County School District was quick to denounce Ms. Volitich following the publication of the malicious Huffington Post article, removing her from the classroom almost immediately.

“She does not speak on behalf of the Citrus County School District,” Scott Hebert, the executive director of educational services for the district, told the Huffington Post. “The views she’s listed [online] are really not in line with how our district operates.”

The ouster of Ms. Volitich demonstrates once again the perilous state of free speech in America today. Those holding controversial and politically incorrect opinions are regularly targeted by the hostile mass media and radical activist organizations such as antifa in an effort to censor their speech, harm their reputations, and, if possible, jeopardize their professional life.

John Friend is a freelance writer who lives in California.




What the FBI/FISA Memo Really Tells Us About Our Government

When the “biggest cheerleader” for maintaining the secretive FISA court knew just how abused the process really is, why would he and the rest of Congress want to keep it a secret from the citizens? And how much do they actually care about surveillance abuse of Americans?

By Rep. Ron Paul

The release of the House Intelligence Committee’s memo on the FBI’s abuse of the FISA process set off a partisan firestorm. The Democrats warned us beforehand that declassifying the memo would be the end the world as we know it. It was reckless to allow Americans to see this classified material, they said. Agents in the field could be harmed, sources and methods would be compromised, they claimed.

Republicans who had seen the memo claimed that it was far worse than Watergate. They said that mass firings would begin immediately after it became public. They said that the criminality of U.S. government agencies exposed by the memo would shock Americans.

Then it was released, and the world did not end. FBI agents have thus far not been fired. Seeing “classified” material did not terrify us, but rather it demonstrated clearly that information is kept from us by claiming it is “classified.”

In the end, both sides got it wrong. Here’s what the memo really shows us:

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First, the memo demonstrates that there is a “deep state” that does not want things like elections to threaten its existence. Candidate Trump’s repeated promises to get along with Russia and to re-assess NATO so many years after the end of the Cold War were threatening to a Washington that depends on creating enemies to sustain the fear needed to justify a trillion-dollar yearly military budget.

Imagine if candidate Trump had kept his campaign promises when he became president. Without the “Russia threat” and without the “China threat” and without the need to dump billions into NATO, we might actually have reaped a “peace dividend” more than a quarter-century after the end of the Cold War. That would have starved the war-promoting military-industrial complex and its network of pro-war “think tanks” that populate the Washington Beltway area.

Second, the memo shows us that neither Republicans nor Democrats really care that much about surveillance abuse when average Americans are the victims. It is clear that the FISA abuse detailed in the memo was well known to Republicans like House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes before the memo was actually released. It was likely also well known by Democrats in the House. But both parties suppressed this evidence of FBI abuse of the FISA process until after the FISA Amendments Act could be re-authorized. They didn’t want Americans to know how corrupt the surveillance system really is and how the U.S. has become far too much like East Germany. That might cause more Americans to call up their representatives and demand that the FISA mass surveillance amendment be allowed to sunset.

Ironically, Chairman Nunes was the biggest cheerleader for the extension of the FISA Amendments even as he knew how terribly the FISA process had been abused!

Finally, hawks on both sides of the aisle in Congress used “Russia-gate” as an excuse to build animosity toward Russia among average Americans. They knew from the classified information that there was no basis for their claims that the Trump Administration was put into office with Moscow’s assistance, but they played along because it served their real goal of keeping the U.S. on war footing and keeping the gravy train rolling.

But don’t worry: The neocons in both parties will soon find another excuse to keep us terrified and ready to flush away a trillion dollars a year on military spending and continue our arguments and new “Cold War” with Russia.

In the meantime, be skeptical of both parties. With few exceptions they are not protecting liberty but promoting its opposite.

Ron Paul, a former U.S. representative from Texas and medical doctor, continues to write his weekly column for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, online at www.ronpaulinstitute.org.

© 2018 RonPaulInstitute



Things Are Getting Worse, Not Better: Round Ups, Checkpoints and National ID Cards

Here in Amerika, things are getting worse—not better—as the nation inches ever closer toward totalitarianism, that goose-stepping form of tyranny in which the government has all of the power and “we the people” have none.

By John Whitehead

“The roundups are getting worse. The checkpoints are getting worse. The harassment is getting worse. The things we were worried would happen are happening.”—Angus Johnston, professor at the City University of New York

No one is safe.

No one is immune.

No one gets spared the anguish, fear and heartache of living under the shadow of an authoritarian police state.

That’s the message being broadcast 24/7 to the citizens and residents of the American police state with every new piece of government propaganda, every new law that criminalizes otherwise lawful activity, every new policeman on the beat, every new surveillance camera casting a watchful eye, every sensationalist news story that titillates and distracts, every new prison or detention center built to house troublemakers and other undesirables, every new court ruling that gives government agents a green light to strip and steal and rape and ravage the citizenry, every school that opts to indoctrinate rather than educate, and every new justification for why Americans should comply with the government’s attempts to trample the Constitution underfoot.

Here in Amerika, things are getting worse—not better—as the nation inches ever closer toward totalitarianism, that goose-stepping form of tyranny in which the government has all of the power and “we the people” have none.

Take what happened recently in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

On Friday, Jan. 19, 2018, immigration agents boarded a Greyhound bus heading to downtown Miami from Orlando and demanded that all passengers provide proof of residence or citizenship. One grandmother, traveling by bus to meet her granddaughter for the first time, was arrested and taken off the bus when she couldn’t provide proof of residency.

No word on whether that grandmother was actually in the country illegally.

All we know is that the woman didn’t have proof of identification or residency on her, which is common for many older people who don’t happen to drive and have no reason to walk around with a photo ID. According to a study by the Brennan Center for Justice, more than three million Americans don’t actually own a government-issued picture ID. That group includes the elderly, the poor, city dwellers, young people, college students, and some rural residents who might not live near a DMV.

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This isn’t is a new occurrence.

A year ago, passengers arriving in New York’s JFK Airport on a domestic flight from San Francisco were ordered to show their “documents” to border patrol agents in order to get off the plane.

With the government empowered to carry out transportation checks to question people about their immigration status within a 100-mile border zone that wraps around the country, you’re going to see a rise in these “show your papers” incidents.

That’s a problem, and I’ll tell you why.

We are not supposed to be living in a “show me your papers” society.

Despite this, the U.S. government has recently introduced measures allowing police and other law enforcement officials to stop individuals (citizens and noncitizens alike), demand they identify themselves, and subject them to patdowns, warrantless searches, and interrogations.

These actions fly in the face of longstanding constitutional safeguards forbidding such police state tactics.

Set aside the debate over illegal immigration for a moment and think long and hard about what it means when government agents start demanding that people show their papers on penalty of arrest.

The problem with allowing government agents to demand identification from anyone they suspect might be an illegal immigrant—the current scheme being employed by the Trump administration to ferret out and cleanse the country of illegal immigrants—is that it lays the groundwork for a society in which you are required to identify yourself to any government worker who demands it.

Such tactics quickly lead one down a slippery slope that ends with government agents empowered to subject anyone—citizen and noncitizen alike—to increasingly intrusive demands that they prove not only that they are legally in the country, but also that they are in compliance with every statute and regulation on the books.

This flies in the face of the provisions of the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which declares that all persons have the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures by government agents. At a minimum, the Fourth Amendment protects the American people from undue government interference with their movement and from baseless interrogation about their identities or activities.

Unless police have reasonable suspicion that  a person is guilty of wrongdoing, they have no legal authority to stop the person and require identification. In other words, “we the people” have the right to come and go as we please without the fear of being questioned by police or forced to identify ourselves.

The Rutherford Institute has issued a Constitutional Q&A on “The Legality of Stop and ID Procedures” that provides some guidance on one’s rights if stopped and asked by police to show identification.

Unfortunately, even with legal protections on the books, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for the average American to avoid falling in line with a national identification system.

We’re almost at that point already.

Passed by Congress in 2005 and scheduled to take effect nationwide by October 2020, the Real ID Act, which imposes federal standards on identity documents such as state drivers’ licenses, is the prelude to this national identification system.

Fast forward to the Trump administration’s war on illegal immigration, and you have the perfect storm necessary for the adoption of a national ID card, the ultimate human tracking device, which would make the police state’s task of monitoring, tracking and singling out individual suspects—citizen and noncitizen alike—far simpler.

Granted, in the absence of a national ID card, “we the people” are already tracked in a myriad of ways: through our state driver’s licenses, Social Security numbers, bank accounts, purchases and electronic transactions; by way of our correspondence and communication devices—email, phone calls and mobile phones; through chips implanted in our vehicles, identification documents, even our clothing.

Add to this the fact that businesses, schools and other facilities are relying more and more on fingerprints and facial recognition to identify us.

All the while, data companies such as Acxiom are capturing vast caches of personal information to help airports, retailers, police and other government authorities instantly determine whether someone is the person he or she claims to be.

This informational glut—used to great advantage by both the government and corporate sectors—is converging into a mandate for “an internal passport,” a.k.a., a national ID card that would store information as basic as a person’s name, birth date and place of birth, as well as private information, including a Social Security number, fingerprint, retinal scan and personal, criminal and financial records.

A federalized, computerized, cross-referenced, databased system of identification policed by government agents would be the final nail in the coffin for privacy (not to mention a logistical security nightmare that would leave Americans even more vulnerable to every hacker in the cybersphere).

Americans have always resisted adopting a national ID card for good reason: it gives the government and its agents the ultimate power to target, track and terrorize the populace according to the government’s own nefarious purposes.

National ID card systems have been used before, by other oppressive governments, in the name of national security, invariably with horrifying results.

For instance, in Germany, the Nazis required all Jews to carry special stamped ID cards for travel within the country. A prelude to the yellow Star of David badges, these stamped cards were instrumental in identifying Jews for deportation to death camps in Poland.

Author Raul Hilberg summarizes the impact that such a system had on the Jews:

The whole identification system, with its personal documents, specially assigned names, and conspicuous tagging in public, was a powerful weapon in the hands of the police. First, the system was an auxiliary device that facilitated the enforcement of residence and movement restrictions. Second, it was an independent control measure in that it enabled the police to pick up any Jew, anywhere, anytime. Third, and perhaps most important, identification had a paralyzing effect on its victims.

In South Africa during apartheid, pass books were used to regulate the movement of black citizens and segregate the population. The Pass Laws Act of 1952 stipulated where, when and for how long a black African could remain in certain areas. Any government employee could strike out entries, which cancelled the permission to remain in an area. A pass book that did not have a valid entry resulted in the arrest and imprisonment of the bearer.

Identity cards played a crucial role in the genocide of the Tutsis in the central African country of Rwanda. The assault, carried out by extremist Hutu militia groups, lasted around 100 days and resulted in close to a million deaths. While the ID cards were not a precondition to the genocide, they were a facilitating factor. Once the genocide began, the production of an identity card with the designation “Tutsi” spelled a death sentence at any roadblock.

Identity cards have also helped oppressive regimes carry out eliminationist policies such as mass expulsion, forced relocation and group denationalization. Through the use of identity cards, Ethiopian authorities were able to identify people with Eritrean affiliation during the mass expulsion of 1998. The Vietnamese government was able to locate ethnic Chinese more easily during their 1978-79 expulsion. The USSR used identity cards to force the relocation of ethnic Koreans (1937), Volga Germans (1941), Kamyks and Karachai (1943), Crimean Tartars, Meshkhetian Turks, Chechens, Ingush and Balkars (1944) and ethnic Greeks (1949). And ethnic Vietnamese were identified for group denationalization through identity cards in Cambodia in 1993, as were the Kurds in Syria in 1962.

And in the United States, post-9/11, more than 750 Muslim men were rounded up on the basis of their religion and ethnicity and detained for up to eight months. Their experiences echo those of 120,000 Japanese-Americans who were similarly detained 75 years ago following the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Despite a belated apology and monetary issuance by the U.S. government, the U.S. Supreme Court has yet to declare such a practice illegal. Moreover, laws such as the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) empower the government to arrest and detain indefinitely anyone they “suspect” of being an enemy of the state.

You see, it’s a short hop, skip and a jump from allowing government agents to stop and demand identification from someone suspected of being an illegal immigrant to empowering government agents to subject anyone—citizen and noncitizen alike—to increasingly intrusive demands that they prove not only that they are legally in the country, but that they are also lawful, in compliance with every statute and regulation on the books, and not suspected of having committed some crime or other.

It’s no longer a matter of if, but when.

You may be innocent of wrongdoing now, but when the standard for innocence is set by the government, no one is safe. Everyone is a suspect. And anyone can be a criminal when it’s the government determining what is a crime.

Remember, the police state does not discriminate.

At some point, it will not matter whether your skin is black or yellow or brown or white. It will not matter whether you’re an immigrant or a citizen. It will not matter whether you’re rich or poor. It won’t even matter whether you’re driving, flying or walking.

After all, government-issued bullets will kill you just as easily whether you’re a law-abiding citizen or a hardened criminal. Government jails will hold you just as easily whether you’ve obeyed every law or broken a dozen. And whether or not you’ve done anything wrong, government agents will treat you like a suspect simply because they have been trained to view and treat everyone like potential criminals.

Eventually, when the police state has turned that final screw and slammed that final door, all that will matter is whether some government agent—poorly trained, utterly ignorant of the Constitution, way too hyped up on the power of their badges, and authorized to detain, search, interrogate, threaten and generally harass anyone they see fit—chooses to single you out for special treatment.

We’ve been having this same debate about the perils of government overreach for the past 50-plus years, and still we don’t seem to learn, or if we learn, we learn too late.

All of the excessive, abusive tactics employed by the government today—warrantless surveillance, stop and frisk searches, SWAT team raids, roadside strip searches, asset forfeiture schemes, private prisons, indefinite detention, militarized police, etc.—started out as a seemingly well-meaning plan to address some problem in society that needed a little extra help.

Be careful what you wish for: you will get more than you bargained for, especially when the government’s involved.

In the case of a national identification system, it might start off as a means of curtailing illegal immigration, but it will end up as a means of controlling the American people.

Remember, nothing is ever as simple as the government claims it is.

The war on drugs turned out to be a war on the American people, waged with SWAT teams and militarized police.

The war on terror turned out to be a war on the American people, waged with warrantless surveillance and indefinite detention.

The war on immigration is turning out to be yet another war on the American people, waged with roving government agents demanding “papers, please.”

Where things start to get dicey is when the stakes get higher, when there’s money to be made, when there are lives on the line. All of these government-fueled wars—on drugs, on terror, on immigration—have given risen to whole industries (defense contractors, prison contractors, security contractors, etc.) devoted to profiting off them. And “we the taxpayers” are footing the bill.

It’s easy to point fingers at the Trump Administration, but this feeding frenzy started long before Trump ascended to the White House. He’s just a red herring—as journalist Glenn Greenwald puts it, “a shiny red herring—one that distracts from the failures, corruption, and malice of the very Establishment so invested in promoting it.”

We’re in trouble, and we’re all to blame: the government bureaucrats who are marching in lockstep with the regime just as much as the populace that obeys every order, that fails to question or resist or push back against government dictates that are unjust or unconstitutional or immoral, and that allows itself to become so focused on the political circus before them that they fail to heed the danger creeping up behind them.

We have been down this road before.

Reporting on the trial of Nazi bureaucrat Adolf Eichmann for the New Yorker in 1963, Hannah Arendt describes the “submissive meekness with which Jews went to their death”:

arriving on time at the transportation points, walking under their own power to the places of execution, digging their own graves, undressing and making neat piles of their clothing, and lying down side by side to be shot—seemed a telling point, and the prosecutor, asking witness after witness, “Why did you not protest?,” “Why did you board the train?,” “Fifteen thousand people were standing there and hundreds of guards facing you—why didn’t you revolt and charge and attack these guards?,” harped on it for all it was worth. But the sad truth of the matter is that the point was ill taken, for no non-Jewish group or non-Jewish people had behaved differently.

The lessons of history are clear: chained, shackled and imprisoned in a detention camp, there is little chance of resistance. The time to act is now, before it’s too late. Indeed, there is power in numbers, but if those numbers will not unite and rise up against their oppressors, there can be no resistance.

You can’t have it both ways.

You can’t live in a constitutional republic if you allow the government to act like a police state.

You can’t claim to value freedom if you allow the government to operate like a dictatorship.

You can’t expect to have your rights respected if you allow the government to treat whomever it pleases with disrespect and an utter disregard for the rule of law.

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If you’re inclined to advance this double standard because you believe you have done nothing wrong and have nothing to hide, beware: there’s always a boomerang effect.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, whatever dangerous practices you allow the government to carry out now—whether it’s in the name of national security or protecting America’s borders or making America great again—rest assured, these same practices can and will be used against you when the government decides to set its sights on you.

As Arendt concludes, “under conditions of terror most people will comply but some people will not, just as the lesson of the countries to which the Final Solution was proposed is that ‘it could happen’ in most places but it did not happen everywhere.”

It does not have to happen here.

Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute. His book, Battlefield America: The War on the American People, is available from AFP  at www.americanfreepress.net or 1-888-699-6397. Whitehead can be contacted at johnw@rutherford.org.

 




Republicans Pushing National Biometric ID Bill

It’s “deja vu all over again” as the issue of biometric national ID cards, which would be required in order to work, travel, receive benefits, or otherwise move about in America, has reared its ugly head yet again, and people paying attention are warning, “H.R. 4760 forces a new biometric national ID on every American citizen.” Stop this bill!

By Chuck Baldwin

The two major parties in Washington, D.C., have been playing “good cop, bad cop” with the American people for decades, and the charade is still working. The vast majority of voters seem totally oblivious to the fact that both parties are little more than puppets for the “man behind the curtain” (to borrow a line from “The Wizard of Oz”). After all is said and done, both parties are destroying constitutional government and liberty in America. They merely approach their duplicity from different directions. But both parties are taking the country down the same slippery slope to serfdom.

Democrats are the out-front bad guys on domestic/social issues such as abortion, gay rights, and gun control. Unfortunately, these are about the only issues conservative Christians pay much attention to. So, to them, Democrats are big, bad sinners and Republicans are spotless saints. But what Christians and most conservatives never seem to notice is that when it comes to the advancement of the warfare state and the promotion of the police state, Republicans are far and away the baddest of the bad. So, depending on what the “man behind the curtain” wants to push at the time, he knows he has both parties in his pocket to do his bidding.

When pushing a pro-abortion, pro-sodomy, pro-gun control agenda is on tap, the game is rigged for Democrats. And when pushing a perpetual war, police state agenda is on tap, the game is rigged for Republicans. No matter who wins, the “man behind the curtain” is always able to successfully push one part of his agenda or the other. So, now that Republicans are in power in Washington, D.C., perpetual war and a burgeoning police state is on tap. And, again, most conservatives and Christians will not even notice.

But for those who are interested in preserving whatever is left of America’s individual liberty, they need to be aware that the Republicans in D.C. are in the process of pushing a bill through Congress (Donald Trump would sign it in a heartbeat) that creates a biometric national ID card for every American.

Couched in anti-immigration language, Republican House members—the main sponsor of the bill is Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.-6)—have proposed H.R. 4760. The bill already has 82 cosponsors. The bill was introduced on Jan. 10.

H.R. 4760 forces a new biometric national ID on every American citizen. One would not be able to get a job, get a loan, open a bank account or board a plane without this national ID. And as is always the case, there is a total blackout in reporting on this bill by the mainstream media—including FOX News.

At The New American, Alex Newman writes in “GOP Leaders Plot Amnesty In Exchange For National ID”:

Republican leaders in Congress are once again plotting with Democrats to stab the American people and the U.S. Constitution in the back, on multiple key issues. Under the guise of getting “something” in exchange for providing amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants (and future Democrat voters) in Obama’s illegal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, the establishment wing of the GOP is pushing a radical longtime goal of the bipartisan deep state: mandatory national biometric ID cards for all Americans. Privacy and liberty are under serious threat, critics warned.

The Orwellian national ID scheme, known as “E-Verify,” is ostensibly aimed at making it harder for illegal immigrants to find work in the United States. Basically, as part of the program, which would become mandatory under the bill, every employer would be forced to buy a scanner and use it to check the legal work status of potential employees. On top of that, every worker would be forced to have a biometric ID issued by the federal government in order to be able to legally work. Without this national ID, employers would not legally be able to hire somebody.

But in reality, illegal immigrants are typically paid under the table anyway—many of them simply work as day laborers and get paid in cash at the end of the day. In light of that fact, the unconstitutional plot to mandate a national ID will do little to prevent unscrupulous employers from continuing to hire illegal immigrants, off the books. What the scheme will do, though, is force all law-abiding Americans to carry an unconstitutional national ID with all their information on it, including sensitive biometric data, just to be allowed to work. It will also give the feds a key new tool to monitor and control people.

There is a reason the leadership of both parties have supported the effort for many years. Indeed, even Obama, who did his best to help the United Nations flood America with Third World immigration under various guises, firmly supported the national ID plan, calling for a package containing it to be sent to him so he could sign it as quickly as possible. But now, instead of a Big Government liberal program to track Americans, the plot is being marketed as an ostensibly “conservative” measure to supposedly boost “border security” and limit illegal immigration.

A previous version of the scheme was actually sponsored by ultra-leftist open-borders advocate Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). But with the GOP in firm control now, the controversial national ID provision most recently surfaced in the Republican-backed “Securing America’s Future” Act (H.R. 4760). Sponsored by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, the bill has some 70 cosponsors less than two weeks after being introduced. And already, organizations such as NumbersUSA that portray themselves as pro-America, anti-amnesty are expressing a willingness to cave on amnesty as long as the national ID and E-Verify become law.

Former Congressman Ron Paul is also trying to sound the alarm about this Orwellian bill. Writing to his supporters at Campaign for Liberty, Dr. Paul warns:

This bill would give DACA recipients a 3-year renewable legal status while forcing a biometric National ID card on virtually everyone else.

That’s right—the statists want to control you. Just think about it. . . . Gun ownership.  Employment history.  Family and friends. Purchasing habits.  Health records.  Travel.  Religious beliefs. Past political contributions. . . . Just imagine all these records and more on EVERY American citizen stored in a massive national database right at a federal government bureaucrat’s finger tips.

But that’s not all. Under the statists’ National ID scheme, you’d be forced to carry around your National ID card, tied to this massive database, chockfull of biometric identifiers like fingerprints and retina scans.

Without this ID, you won’t be able to legally hold a job—or likely even open a bank account or even board a plane!

You see, this National ID scheme is a key component of H.R. 4760. If passed, this dangerous scheme would require all Americans to carry an ID card that would:

  • Allow federal bureaucrats to include biometric identification information on the card, potentially even including fingerprints, retinal scans, or scans of veins on the back of hands, which could easily be used as a tracking device;
  • Be required for all U.S. workers regardless of place of birth, making it illegal for anyone to hold a job in the United States who doesn’t obtain an ID card;
  • Require all employers to purchase an ‘ID scanner’ to verify the ID cards with the federal government.  Every time any citizen applies for a job, the government would know–and you can bet it’s only a matter of time until ‘ID scans’ will be required to make even routine purchases, as well.

Of course, you and I have seen this before. . . . For years now, statists in BOTH parties have been fighting to RAM their radical National ID-database scheme into law.

In fact, this scheme was a key portion of the infamous failed “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” bills BOTH parties tried to ram through during the Obama administration.

Now, using the momentum behind Trump’s tough talk on immigration and border security, I’m afraid the statists believe the best way to finally enact their National ID scheme is by promoting their bill on Capitol Hill as a “DACA fix” while they sell it to the GOP base as a border “security” measure.

Of course, that’s nothing more than a buzzword meant to trick Americans from all over the country into thinking that Congress is going to seal our southern border.

But in reality, it means something far different. [What] the “security” members of BOTH parties in the U.S. House want doesn’t target any U.S. border.  Instead, it’s meant to create an all-out police state within them.

See Ron Paul’s full letter here: “Papers, Please

So, what Donald Trump and his fellow Republicans in Congress want to do is provide amnesty for illegals (1.8 million vs. the 800,000 proposed under Barack Obama—meaning another Trump campaign promise goes down the toilet), while strapping the American citizenry with a biometric national ID card, so WE can be tracked by Big Brother.

And, again, the national news media is hiding the bill from public scrutiny by completely ignoring it (which is what they always do to help an anti-freedom bill become law), and since Republicans are the ones promoting this bill, so-called conservatives and Christians are ignoring it also. More than that, many so-called conservatives and Christians are actively supporting the bill.

It’s the “good cop, bad cop” façade working to perfection.

If conservatives, constitutionalists, Christians, and civil libertarians do not awaken to this phony left/right, conservative/liberal, Republican/Democrat dog and pony show that plays nonstop in Washington, D.C., freedom is not long for this country of ours.

H.R. 4760 doesn’t secure America’s borders; it puts the people who live inside America’s borders in a cage—a Big Brother, Orwellian, police state cage. It makes illegals legal and liberty illegal.

If you want to protect your children and grandchildren’s prospects of inheriting even a modicum of freedom, you will do everything you can to dissuade your congressman from supporting and voting for this horrific bill. A good place to start is finding out if your congressman is a cosponsor.

I shudder to think what America will look like a year after this bill passes.

WE MUST STOP H.R. 4760.

P.S. Since both parties in Washington, D.C. (including and especially Donald Trump) seem determined to turn America into a police state, it is urgent that every freedom-minded citizen educate themselves as to constitutional principles relating to police contacts.

Not long ago, my constitutional attorney son brought an outstanding lecture to help people know how to act constitutionally and safely when they are stopped, pulled over, or brought into contact with police officers. The address is simply entitled “Police Contact: How to Respond.”

Americans are more and more frequently falling victim to bad arrests and even physical harm at the hands of eager—but reckless—police officers. If a policeman believes you are guilty, being innocent may not be enough to keep you protected. There are many innocent people incarcerated in America’s prisons—or worse, killed by trigger-happy police officers. And oftentimes, citizens themselves help bring on this improper conduct through their own ignorance of the law or through their egregious misunderstanding of the proper way to interact with police officers.

This presentation focuses directly on the “Dos and Don’ts” of dealing with police contacts. Tim discusses how to—and how not to—react to police traffic stops and other contacts. He clearly and simply shows citizens their rights and duties under the Constitution and why it is so important that citizens understand these rights. This material will help citizens preserve liberty in their communities, and it will help policemen be better peace officers. It also might keep you out of jail—or out of the morgue.

Order “Police Contact: How to Respond,” here.

© Chuck Baldwin




Radio Host Pete Santilli Cops Plea to Avoid Possible Six-Year Sentence

Internet-radio host Pete Santilli’s surprising plea bargain could impact the other defendants’ cases in the ongoing Bundy proceedings, given his agreement with the prosecution’s description of events near Bunkerville when the BLM attempted to take Cliven Bundy’s cattle in March 2014. 

By Mark Anderson

LAS VEGAS—Things have taken two sharp, rather unexpected turns regarding the upcoming trial in the Bundy proceedings in the U.S. District Court in Las Vegas, Nevada. For one thing, Internet-radio personality Pete Santilli—one of the defendants in the next trial, which had been set to begin with jury selection on Oct. 10—“pled guilty today (Friday, Oct. 6) and was released pending sentencing,” his attorney, Chris Rasmussen of Las Vegas, confirmed for AFP by phone about 4:30 p.m. Eastern time that day.

Notably, the next trial involves the federal government trying cattleman Cliven Bundy, his sons Ammon and Ryan, and Ryan Payne. Due to his plea arrangement, Santilli is, of course, no longer involved in this trial. Two other defendants, O. Scott Drexler and Eric Parker, who are being retried on some counts for a third time, will join the others in this second of three planned trials of all the defendants charged in the Bunkerville “standoff.”

The second surprising turn of events is that both the prosecution and defense sought and secured yet another delay in these complicated proceedings, this time due to fear that the highly emotional aftermath of the recent deadly shooting during a country music concert outside Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas would adversely impact the attitudes and opinions of jurors for the time being.

As of this writing, the Oct. 10 date for jury selection has been postponed to on or around Oct. 30 and could be subject to change again, given the bumpy track record of these multiple-defendant trial proceedings—which the federal government has been largely losing so far. Santilli, who shot extended livestream video footage at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge building in eastern Oregon—prompting critics to allege that his “journalistic” coverage enabled the government to more closely monitor the ranchers who occupied the abandoned building in protest of onerous federal land controls—was jailed for his role in that affair.

Although cleared of Oregon-related charges, Santilli was kept behind bars and transferred to Nevada to stand trial because he had also taken part in the spring 2014 Bunkerville, Nev. “standoff.” That peaceful confrontation saw Cliven Bundy, his sons, and other supporters gather to protest the policies and conduct of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and other federal agencies that unsuccessfully attempted to confiscate Bundy’s cattle over a grazing-fee dispute.

Regarding the Nevada events, Santilli pled guilty to a felony count of obstruction of justice, based on the government’s assertion that he used his own vehicle to impede the movement of a BLM truck during the attempted cattle impoundment.

Interestingly, Rasmussen believes the government may be willing to consider the prison time that Santilli has already served—behind bars since Jan. 26, 2016—as sufficient punishment for that felony charge. But a reading of the plea memo shared with AFP by Rasmussen shows that the government reserves the right to impose a longer prison term, possibly six years, when Santilli is sentenced, probably in January. Meanwhile, two pending defense motions—one to exclude Oregon-related evidence in the government’s Nevada case against Santilli, and another to challenge the government’s claim that Santilli could not excuse his Nevada actions because of his journalistic background—are now moot, Rasmussen added.

According to court documentation, Santilli’s acceptance of pleading guilty to this single felony-obstruction charge requires, under penalty of perjury, that he accept the following government-sourced statements as “true and correct,” regarding the “standoff” in southern Nevada:

“Beginning on or around March 28, 2014, federal law enforcement officers from the United States Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management, and National Park Service were engaged in the official duties of executing federal court orders to remove and impound cattle trespassing upon federal public lands in and around Bunkerville, Nevada, the cattle belonging to Cliven Bundy, a local rancher.

IRS Loses Cases

“Defendant Santilli knew that Cliven Bundy and his sons, Ammon, Dave, Mel, and Ryan, (collectively, ‘the Bundys’), and others associated with them, planned to thwart, impede and interfere with impoundment operations.

“On April 9, 2014, Defendant Santilli used force to prevent officers from discharging their duties by using his vehicle to block BLM law enforcement officers and civilian employees as they were performing their duties related to the impoundment. Defendant Santilli drove his vehicle straight toward a BLM law enforcement officer’s vehicle, preventing the officer and the rest of the convoy behind him from being able to move forward.

“The officer ordered Defendant Santilli to move out of the way but Defendant Santilli continued to block the convoy’s path. Defendant Santilli finally reversed his vehicle out of the path of the convoy only after the officer repeated the command several times.

“By using force to block the convoy, Defendant Santilli allowed others to surround the convoy and threaten the occupants of the vehicles by force of violence and fear, inducing the officers to leave the place where their duties were required to be performed.

“Defendant Santilli acknowledges that all of the above took place within the State and Federal District of Nevada.”

The maximum penalty for “Conspiracy to Impede or Injure a Federal Officer,” the formal name of this count against Santilli under 18 U.S.C. § 372, is six years’ imprisonment, a fine of $250,000, or both. But the plea memo shows that Santilli owes no restitution under this charge, nor will he be required to forfeit any of his assets—provided he meets the strict terms of his supervised release until he’s sentenced.

He must not violate any federal, state, or local laws, is restricted from any significant travel, and among other things must avoid any known association with anyone who’s breaking any law. Nor can Santilli possess a gun or any other item deemed a weapon by the government. Failing to show up for a hearing or other procedural matter would also result in this deal being dissolved.

Mark Anderson is a longtime newsman now working as the roving editor for AFP. Email him at truthhound2@yahoo.com.




Mental Health Laws Used to Silence Critic

Pennsylvania powerbrokers have repeatedly abused the legal system to lock up a political opponent, according to a former civil rights attorney in Pennsylvania, by misusing a mental health act original intended to protect individuals with symptoms of mental illness.

By Dave Gahary

A law on the books in the Keystone State intended to apply to individuals with mental illness is now being used for a more sinister purpose: to involuntarily commit political opponents who pose a threat to the established power structure in the commonwealth’s capital.

Andrew J. Ostrowski, a former Pennsylvania civil rights attorney, found himself in the sights of the powers-that-be in Harrisburg, and learned the hard way how the 1976 Mental Health Procedures Act (MHPA) is being used to chill criticism of the power prism.

The MHPA “establishes procedures for the treatment of mentally ill persons” and “set[s] forth the Commonwealth’s policy and procedures regarding the provision of mental health services.” Article III of the act defines the requirements and limitations on involuntary emergency examination, treatment, and hospitalization of individuals who present a “clear and present danger to others.” That key phrase is defined as meaning “within the past 30 days the person has inflicted or attempted to inflict serious bodily harm on another and that there is a reasonable probability that such conduct will be repeated.”

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Longtime American Free Press subscriber and supporter Dorene Shutz tipped off this reporter to Ostrowski’s recent kidnapping. “He is awake to the corrupt courts,” she explained.

On Aug. 26, this reporter spent most of the day with Ostrowski, Ms. Shutz, and other mild-mannered patriots at The Nationalist Times conference, and found all the participants to be scholarly truth-seekers. None who were present that day could ever be considered severely mentally ill and in need of involuntary treatment by even the most incompetent authority, but that says nothing of corrupt authority.

Ostrowski was born and raised in Lancaster, Penn., attended Millersville University, and “was in the first graduating class at Widener University” in Harrisburg.

“I trained for several years in the formal legal law firm environment,” he told AFP. He soon discovered, however, that his chosen profession as an “officer of the court” wasn’t what he thought it might be.

“I had been a practicing lawyer until 2010 when I ran into disciplinary issues,” he said, “and, as I distanced myself from the formal practice and started to look at these things, I started to see that there really was no basis for the licensing of the practice of law. The licensing of the practice of law really is an impediment to everybody’s access to justice, because your attorney is not free to advocate without risking his or her own property.”

On Aug. 23, Ostrowski filed a motion, attacking what he saw as a corrupt system.

“I filed what is called a motion for declaratory relief,” he explained, “which is a vehicle that gives you access to have declarations made that certain things are constitutional, not constitutional, lawful, and unlawful. And I did it to challenge the basis of the attorney law license. This . . . is a very significant motion that really would upset the entire judicial structure in this country.”

Sitting at his desk on Sept. 19, Ostrowski found out how significant it really was.

“I posted a notice on Facebook and sent out emails notifying people I was going on Facebook Live and, within 15 minutes of that, the police were at my door.”

Facebook Live allows a user to broadcast live video streams, requiring nothing more than a computer with a video camera and a Facebook account.

“I looked out the front window,” he said, “and there was a cop climbing over my railing to come around back, so I went around to the back door and locked it, and I went on Facebook Live. And then somehow, they got a key and they came in with gloves on and with their tasers pulled, three of them, a female and two males.”

The webcam captured the interaction between Ostrowski and the police, who entered his home without his permission. In the video, Ostrowski can be seen asking the officers to show him their warrant. Viewers see an officer telling him they have one but then forcing Ostrowski from his desk before the video ends.

“They did not have a proper warrant; they didn’t have any paperwork,” Ostrowski said. “I had to kind of—as passively as I could—resist them dragging me into an ambulance and throwing me in without seeing some paperwork.”

The short trip from his house to the ambulance was not without injury.

“I had bruises and a cut on my wrist from the handcuffs,” he said. AFP asked what happened next.

“I was taken in to the local emergency room where they process you,” he explained, “and then they sent me to [Brooke Glen Behavioral Hospital] down in the Philadelphia suburbs. That was a horrific experience. It was clear that the agenda was, as expressed to me by the doctor, to get me on some kind of pharmaceuticals, and/or, if I refused or resisted, to have me placed long-term, and do it involuntarily. He specifically advocated for that in the hearing on Sept. 22.”

They held him there for seven days, two days longer than Section 302 of the MHPA ostensibly allows. Eventually a judge signed an order denying any commitment petition.

“They basically said I shouldn’t have been there,” explained Ostrowski. AFP asked if he had any recourse, as the judge’s ruling can’t erase the fact that he had been kept there against his will for all that time.

“Of course, yes,” Ostrowski said. “This is a gross violation of all my fundamental civil rights. There’s not one that you can discount from it, [except] maybe cruel and unusual punishment.” Alarmingly, this wasn’t the first time they came for Ostrowski, “all directly related,” he believes, “to my advocacy efforts.”

“This is the third time this year,” he explained.

Ostrowski contends that the abuse of this mental health law to truncate people’s due process rights is a clear problem.

“This is why AMERICAN FREE PRESS exists,” he said. “This is why The Nationalist Times exists. This is why you guys do what you do, because this stuff happens to real folks.”

Dave Gahary, a former submariner in the U.S. Navy, prevailed in a suit brought by the New York Stock Exchange in an attempt to silence him. Dave is the producer of an upcoming full-length feature film about the attack on the USS Liberty. See erasingtheliberty.com for more information and to get the new book on which the movie will be based, Erasing the Liberty.




Congress Says White Groups Are Terrorists

Lawmakers have condemned peaceful protesters and demanded the president do the same, yet they remain silent about leftist violence perpetrated by groups like Antifa and Black Lives Matter.  

By John Friend

The Senate and House recently passed a joint resolution specifically condemning white nationalists and other so-called “hate groups”—including “neo-Nazis, the Ku Klux Klan and white supremacists”— and urged President Donald Trump to speak out against such groups and devote federal resources toward addressing the purported “threat” posed by them.

The resolution, S.J.Res. 49, was introduced by Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) with the support of Sens. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Corey Gardner (R-Colo.) and others in the wake of the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Va., a rally legally organized by leading members of the so-called alt-right that was sabotaged by a combination of state and local police, state of Virginia political officials, and a violent crowd of radical leftist counter-protesters.

The rally resulted in the death of Heather Heyer, a 32-year-old woman who was among the counter-protestors when she was struck by a vehicle driven into a crowd by a young man who was there to support the alt-right. The circumstances surrounding the car crash and Ms. Heyer’s death remain murky. Some allege that the driver of the vehicle, James Alex Fields Jr., was violently attacked in his vehicle by counter-protesters shortly before he drove into the crowd.

Fields allegedly has had a troubled history, having been accused in the past of assaulting his own mother on two occasions, and was reportedly on medication to help manage his outbursts of anger. The joint resolution, which was approved by the Senate on Sept. 11 and by the House on Sept. 12, condemns “the racist violence and domestic terrorist attack” that took place during the Unite the Right rally, while completely ignoring and dismissing the violence committed by counter-protesters that day. It also offers condolences and support to the Heyer family and families of the state police officers killed when their helicopter crashed as it left the Charlottesville area and specifically rejects “white nationalism, white supremacy, and neo-Nazism as hateful expressions of intolerance that are contradictory to the values that define the people of the United States.”

The resolution goes on to demand that President Donald Trump “speak out against hate groups that espouse racism, extremism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism and white supremacy” and to devote federal resources “to address the growing prevalence of those hate groups in the United States.” Days after the resolution was adopted, Trump signed and endorsed it, saying he rejected bigotry in all its forms. “No matter the color of our skin or our ethnic heritage, we all live under the same laws, we all salute the same great flag, and we are all made by the same almighty God,” Trump declared in a statement following his endorsement of the resolution.

Shortly after signing the joint resolution, during a conference call with a number of prominent Jewish groups, Trump condemned those who spread anti-Semitism. “We forcefully condemn those who seek to incite anti-Semitism or to spread any form of slander and hate—and I will ensure we protect Jewish communities, and all communities, that face threats to their safety,” Trump stated during the call.

IRS Loses Cases

The president has come under fire for not denouncing the alt-right rally and its organizers quickly or forcefully enough. Never mind that the rally was legally organized and represented an entirely legitimate expression of the First Amendment. The highly distorted controlled media narrative immediately disseminated during and after the rally portrayed the alt-right rally attendees as unhinged, violent white supremacists, neo-Nazis and Klansmen who were determined to violently confront the leftist counter-protesters who mobilized across the city of Charlottesville in response to the rally.

In reality, the vast majority of the violence was initiated and instigated by the radical leftist counter-protesters themselves, who threw urine and feces not only at alt-right demonstrators but also at media and police officers.

In light of the joint resolution and Trump’s endorsement of it, many Americans are left wondering when a similar resolution will be adopted and endorsed that specifically denounces and rejects the radical left, which has for decades engaged in blatant acts of violence, intimidation and terrorism. In recent years, various leftist groups—Black Lives Matter, Antifa, radical communists, anti-capitalists and anarchists—have become increasingly bold and violent, particularly since Trump stepped onto the political scene.

Black Lives Matter activists have burned down and looted entire neighborhoods, while Antifa and other radical leftists have attacked Trump supporters, damaged and destroyed private property, and otherwise engaged in violence and mayhem in a variety of cities across the United States. Efforts are already under way to demand Trump declare Antifa a terrorist organization. So far, though, Trump and other federal officials have not made any decisive moves to condemn and reject the radical left, which truly does pose a threat to the safety and security of Americans.

John Friend is a writer who lives in California.




Company Wants Employees ‘Chipped’

Joining a high-technology office complex in Sweden, a Wisconsin company now says bio-chips can replace swipe cards, log in to computers, and order food. Distressingly, employees are lining up for the “convenient” implanted chip. 

By Dave Gahary

Five years ago this week, when American Free Press was the first national newspaper to break the story on a San Antonio, Texas school attempting to force all 4,200 students “to wear radio frequency identification (RFID) microchips embedded in the student IDs worn around their necks,” it may have seemed to most readers the stuff of science fiction. Not only is the technology more advanced today, however, it’s gaining acceptance as well.

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Although the teenage heroine in AFP roving editor Mark Anderson’s 2012 report—Andrea Hernandez—eventually won her battle based on religious beliefs that opposed being “chipped,” having microchips voluntarily injected subcutaneously is now a growing fad.

Around two years after AFP’s report, the BBC reported on a company that’s perfecting the art of chipping. In Sweden, a high-technology office complex—Epicenter—is offering chipping to any employee who wants it, and many are jumping at the chance. Even BBC reporter Rory Cellan-Jones—who wrote the Jan. 29, 2015 article entitled “Office puts chips under staff’s skin”—volunteered to have the device, about the size of a grain of rice, implanted in his hand, between his thumb and index finger. He explained the process in the article.

First, he massaged the skin between my thumb and index finger and rubbed in some disinfectant. The[n] he told me to take a deep breath while he inserted the chip. There was a moment of pain—not much worse than any injection—and then he stuck a plaster [an adhesive bandage] over my hand.

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Eventually, all 700 employees working in the complex were to be offered the “opportunity” to be chipped.

The man implanting the chips—Hannes Sjoblad, who works for the Swedish “biohacking” company BioNyfiken—told the reporter:

We already interact with technology all the time. Today it’s a bit messy—we need pin codes and passwords. Wouldn’t it be easy to just touch with your hand? That’s really intuitive. We want to be able to understand this technology before big corporates and big government come to us and say everyone should get chipped—the tax authority chip, the Google or Facebook chip.

An Associated Press (AP) article updating Epicenter’s “progress,” reported that of the “more than 100 companies and some 2,000 workers . . . about 150 workers have them.” The report notes a company in Belgium “also offers its employees such implants, and there are isolated cases around the world where tech enthusiasts have tried this out in recent years.”

“The implants have become so popular,” reports AP, “that Epicenter workers stage monthly events where attendees have the option of being ‘chipped’ for free.”

Now the chipping craze has crossed the pond. As reported in the pages of USA Today on July 24, a “Wisconsin technology firm has begun offering employees microchip implants so they can [enter the company building without a swipe card] and purchase food at work.” The company, Three Square Market (32M)—which is partnering with BioNyfiken—“has over 50 employees who plan to have the devices implanted.”

According to a company press release, 32M “is offering implanted chip technology to all of their employees. Employees will be chipped at the 32M inaugural ‘chip party’ hosted at their headquarters in River Falls, Wisc. on Aug. 1, 2017. Employees will be implanted with a RFID chip allowing them to make purchases in their break room micro market, open doors, log in to computers, use the copy machine etc.”

CEO Todd Westby states: “We foresee the use of RFID technology to drive everything from making purchases in our office break room market, opening doors, use of copy machines, logging into our office computers, unlocking phones, sharing business cards, storing medical/health information, and used as payment at other RFID terminals. Eventually, this technology will become standardized allowing you to use this as your passport, public transit, all purchasing opportunities etc.”

Vice President of International Sales Tony Danna added, “We see chip technology as the next evolution in payment systems.”

Gideon Elite book cover

Fortunately for those neo-luddites among us, not everyone is as eager to step into this brave, new world. State lawmakers in Nevada heard testimony earlier this year regarding chipping.

Legislation introduced by state Sen. Becky Harris “would bar forcefully implanted tracking microchips,” reported the Reno Gazette-Journal on Feb. 13. Sen. Harris believes “the chips pose serious ethical concerns, such as who owns the information stored on the chip and who owns the chip itself.”

She’s also concerned that the chips could be “hacked,” allowing someone unauthorized access to the chip for an illegal purpose.

“There’s no cryptology or protection measures that we’re aware of that are placed on these chips, so it’s possible to hack the information contained within the chips,” she said. “It is possible that you could harass or stalk chipped individuals with the right type of reader.”

Sen. Harris also claims “the chips also pose a potential health problem, citing studies that found fibrosarcoma and sarcoma, a malignant cancerous tumor, at injection sites in animal testing.”

Humans morphing into cancerous cyborgs may have come to pass, but it’s not fazing certain portions of the younger generation. A 25-year-old employee who works for a company in the Epicenter complex, Sandra Haglof, is ready for the transformation.

Laughing, she told AP, “I want to be part of the future.”

Dave Gahary, a former submariner in the U.S. Navy, prevailed in a suit brought by the New York Stock Exchange in an attempt to silence him. Dave is the producer of an upcoming full-length feature film about the attack on the USS Liberty. See erasingtheliberty.com for more information.




Charlottesville: Gladio Meets Cointelpro?

Thinking people who have watched any video of the violent clashes in the streets of Charlottesville, Va. surrounding the legally permitted Unite the Right rally and Antifa’s “counter-protest” are surely scratching their heads along with us, wondering why law enforcement not only failed to keep the two opposing groups separate, but apparently pushed them together–all while standing back and watching the assaults happen without taking action to prevent or stop the mayhem. Kevin Barrett offers one explanation, based in well-documented history, to explain why the event may have unfolded as it did.

By Kevin Barrett

America’s liberal mainstream media is blaming violence in Charlottesville on the so-called alt-right. According to the dominant narrative, crazed neo-Nazi hooligans descended on a quiet college town and started beating people up and running people over. But when a violent, galvanizing, hyper-mediated event occurs, and the mainstream immediately tells us who to blame, I immediately think of 9/11 and all the other false-flag outrages that have done so much damage to our country.

As I wrote in the immediate aftermath of the Charlottesville clashes:

The recent ultraviolence in Charlottesville bears some of the hallmarks of a contrived event: It was shocking, spectacular, hyped by mainstream media, and seemingly designed to cast blame on a demonized ‘other’ (in this case, the alt-right white nationalist movement). Additionally, it could be seen as furthering a ‘strategy of tension’ pitting left against right, multiculturalism against racial nationalism, Bernie Sanders extremists against Donald Trump extremists, and so on.

Deep-state operations designed to polarize societies pursue a “strategy of tension.” They manipulate public opinion by making their opponents, whether on the left or the right, look like violent, dangerous extremists.

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Operation Gladio, a Pentagon program run through NATO, pursued this “strategy of tension” in Cold War-era Europe. Infiltrating and manipulating both right-wing and left-wing groups, deep-state operators incited terrorism and violence, thereby discrediting opposition to NATO-bankster rule and frightening voters into supporting the establishment.

Swiss professor Daniele Ganser and other researchers have shown that virtually all of the “left-wing terrorism” in Europe during the 1960s, 1970s, and early 1980s was actually perpetrated by Operation Gladio. Likewise, most “right-wing violence” was also a Gladio product.

Could Cointelpro, a domestic U.S. equivalent of Operation Gladio, be infiltrating both white nationalist groups and their “Antifa” opposition? Undoubtedly. Could deep-state operators be fomenting violence in an effort to discredit populism? Quite possibly.

The 2016 presidential elections delivered a slap to the face of America’s deep-state elite. Left-wing populist Bernie Sanders trounced Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary and could only be kept out of the White House through election fraud. Right-wing populist Donald Trump won an overwhelming, fraud-proof victory in the Republican primaries, then defied polls and pundits by winning the general election.

Populism is surging. Elites are panicking. The mainstream media’s stranglehold over public opinion is eroding.

America’s self-appointed platonic guardians are scrambling to adjust to the new reality. They appear to be resorting to ever-more-extreme measures in a desperate effort to shore up their dominance.

Their primary target is free speech on the Internet.  The Trump-Sanders phenomenon was the result of 15 years of alternative media chipping away at consensus reality in general and the official story of 9/11 in particular. A deep sentiment of mistrust now pervades the populace.

IRS Loses Cases

The Platonic Guardians and the deep state they rule are desperately seeking ways to muzzle Internet-based alternative media. During the past several months, their pet CIA search engine, Google, has been systematically tweaked in an effort to hide alternative news websites from the general public. This has resulted in a 60% decline in readership for such truth-telling websites as GlobalResearch.ca. The deep state is also trying to cut truth-tellers’ financial lifelines by such means as removing AFP’s credit card processing capabilities, nuking my GoFundMe platform, orchestrating the suspension of truth-seeking academicians like Professor Anthony Hall and Joy Karega from universities, banning history books from Amazon, removing alternative media from YouTube advertising programs, and otherwise trying to starve truth-seekers into submission.

But these attacks on alternative media can only be effective to the extent that public opinion acquiesces. To overcome America’s traditional affinity for free speech, as enshrined in the Bill of Rights, the deep state needs to convince the public that the Internet is populated by dangerous, violent extremists who must be muzzled in the name of public safety and “homeland security.”

And that is where events like Charlottesville come in. Observers have noted that heavily militarized police and National Guard units initially showed up in force­­—then conveniently disappeared just before the violence was incited.

And why were demonstrators allowed to carry weapons? Normally police prevent marchers from carrying objects that could be used as fighting implements. Yet Charlottesville demonstrators carried pepper spray, clubs, weaponizable torches, and so on.

Finally, why does big media obsessively focus on certain self-appointed “leaders” who do everything they can to make the alt-right look bad?

Could the people who benefit the most from “populist” violence—the anti-populist elite—be up to their usual tricks?

Kevin Barrett, Ph.D., is an Arabist-Islamologist scholar and one of America’s best-known critics of the War on Terror. From 1991 through 2006, Dr. Barrett taught at colleges and universities in San Francisco, Paris, and Wisconsin. In 2006, however, he was attacked by Republican state legislators who called for him to be fired from his job at the University of Wisconsin-Madison due to his political opinions. Since 2007, Dr. Barrett has been informally blacklisted from teaching in American colleges and universities. He currently works as a nonprofit organizer, public speaker, author, and talk radio host. He lives in rural western Wisconsin.




We Have the Freedom to Starve

“Anti-Semitic” and “racist” epithets are trotted out any time “establishment truth” is challenged or Israeli policies are criticized, in an effort to create in the reader a knee-jerk emotional aversion to a writer or publication. But it’s valuable to pause and ask, first, what does “anti-Semitic” even mean? Furthermore, does challenging the politics or culture of a particular group—such as a nation’s government—necessarily equate with “racism”? 

By Kevin Barrett

Wells Fargo is one of America’s sleaziest and most disreputable big banks. Their deceptive credit-card pitches contain small-print clauses allowing them to suddenly jack up their “introductory rates” and hit you with usurious 30%-plus interest. So it shouldn’t really surprise anyone that Wells Fargo canceled AFP’s credit-card processing account because some billionaire banker somewhere doesn’t like some of the books AFP sells. And it is shocking—but hardly surprising—to learn that the banking industry is trying to put AFP out of business by adding it to a credit-card-processing blacklist.

A spokesman for the blacklisters said the reason for this financial war is that AFP sells “racist and anti-Semitic books,” namely those by Michael Collins Piper. Naturally, he hasn’t even read any of Piper’s books. If he had, he would know that there was never a single racist bone in Piper’s body.

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Let’s define our terms here. “Racist and anti-Semitic” is a redundant expression. “Anti-Semitism” is a form of racism holding that Jews are biologically inferior because they are a “Semitic” people related to Arabs. Actually, neither Jews nor Arabs are their own race. Judaism is a religion professed by people from many races and cultures, while “Arabs” are simply the many different kinds of people, ranging from Sudanese blacks to blond-haired, blue-eyed Syrians and Lebanese, who happen to speak Arabic.

The pseudo-scientific racist theory known as “anti-Semitism” was popular in the 19th and early 20th centuries, but today, it is Arabs, not Jews, who are the main victims of this kind of racism. Ironically, the country with the worst anti-Semitic (anti-Arab) racism is the state of Israel.

As for Piper’s books, they contain no racial hatred or bigotry of any kind. They are critical of certain aspects of Jewish culture, specifically the ruthless tribalism that prevails among some Jewish-Zionist elites, especially those that work with the criminal underworld. That is cultural critique, not racism.

I am highly critical of the segment of the Arab-Muslim political elite that runs “Saudi” Arabia. That does not make me an anti-Arab or anti-Muslim bigot.

Freedom means nothing if we are not free to critique the culture and politics of the various power elites that rule our world. Piper saw the rising power of Jewish-Zionist elites in the U.S. and discussed the issue reasonably and rationally—if sometimes passionately—in an evidence-based fashion without any reference to or interest in “race.” His investigations into such issues as the JFK assassination and 9/11 were ahead of their time.

It is a national scandal, and a symptom of our national decline, that the whole banking establishment can wage an economic war aimed at the suppression of Piper’s books—without a peep of protest from the ACLU and the supposedly free speech-supporting mainstream media.

Liberty Stickers

The economic assault on AFP is just the latest salvo in what is becoming an all-out Zionist war on free speech. Professor William Robinson’s book We Will Not Be Silenced: The Academic Repression of Israel’s Critics covers several Zionist attempts to quash academic freedom. Now they are targeting booksellers, not just academics.

When I was driven from the academy for questioning 9/11, I assumed I would be free to sell books and articles and solicit donations to support my independent scholarship and radio broadcasts. How could such activities ever be quashed? After all, we still have the First Amendment, right?

Unfortunately, the Constitution only limits the power of government, not the corporate sector. As private monopolies gobble up entire industries, grabbing as much power as governments but without any of the transparency or responsibilities, they have begun to insist that we toe their ideological line on pain of expulsion from the economy. A few months ago, Amazon banned hundreds of history books. At about the same time, my main fundraising platform and database (GoFundMe) closed my account and stole more than $1,000. Various Facebook accounts, including the Nation of Islam’s, have been frozen or shut down for political reasons. Now AFP is being blacklisted.

To buy and sell information, we will soon be microchipped with a “Mark of the Beast” guaranteeing that our views are inoffensive to the powers-that-be. Violators will be banned from economic transactions. They will still be free—free to starve.

Such evil acts of political censorship are exactly what we should expect from the too-big-to-fail financial pharaohs who seized the reins of power in America in the Federal Reserve coup d’état of 1913.

The lesson is clear: If we want to preserve what’s left of freedom in America, we need to overthrow the banksters in a Second American Revolution. 􀀀

Kevin Barrett, Ph.D., is an Arabist-Islamologist scholar and one of America’s best-known critics of the War on Terror. From 1991 through 2006, Dr. Barrett taught at colleges and universities in San Francisco, Paris, and Wisconsin. In 2006, however, he was attacked by Republican state legislators who called for him to be fired from his job at the University of Wisconsin-Madison due to his political opinions. Since 2007, Dr. Barrett has been informally blacklisted from teaching in American colleges and universities. He currently works as a nonprofit organizer, public speaker, author, and talk radio host. He lives in rural western Wisconsin.




You Want a Picture of the Future? Imagine a Boot Stamping on Your Face

Not so long ago, prescient people who were paying attention tried to spread the message that the United States was rapidly becoming a police state. They encouraged their fellow Americans to take action while there was time, usually dismissed with a nonchalant, “That could never happen in my country!” Most people went about their business as usual. Now, those early warnings have been realized. Is it too late to turn things around and restore the promise of liberty?  

By John Whitehead

“The Internet is watching us now. If they want to. They can see what sites you visit. In the future, television will be watching us, and customizing itself to what it knows about us. The thrilling thing is, that will make us feel we’re part of the medium. The scary thing is, we’ll lose our right to privacy. An ad will appear in the air around us, talking directly to us.”—Director Steven Spielberg, Minority Report

We have arrived, way ahead of schedule, into the dystopian future dreamed up by such science fiction writers as George Orwell, Aldous Huxley, Margaret Atwood, and Philip K. Dick.

Much like Orwell’s Big Brother in 1984, the government and its corporate spies now watch our every move.

Much like Huxley’s A Brave New World, we are churning out a society of watchers who “have their liberties taken away from them, but . . . rather enjoy it, because they [are] distracted from any desire to rebel by propaganda or brainwashing.”

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Much like Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, the populace is now taught to “know their place and their duties, to understand that they have no real rights but will be protected up to a point if they conform, and to think so poorly of themselves that they will accept their assigned fate and not rebel or run away.”

And in keeping with Philip K. Dick’s darkly prophetic vision of a dystopian police state—which became the basis for Steven Spielberg’s futuristic thriller “Minority Report,” which was released 15 years ago—we are now trapped into a world in which the government is all-seeing, all-knowing, and all-powerful, and if you dare to step out of line, dark-clad police SWAT teams and pre-crime units will crack a few skulls to bring the populace under control.

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“Minority Report” is set in the year 2054, but it could just as well have taken place in 2017.

Seemingly taking its cue from science fiction, technology has moved so fast in the short time since “Minority Report” premiered in 2002 that what once seemed futuristic no longer occupies the realm of science fiction.

Incredibly, as the various nascent technologies employed and shared by the government and corporations alike—facial recognition, iris scanners, massive databases, behavior prediction software, and so on—are incorporated into a complex, interwoven cyber network aimed at tracking our movements, predicting our thoughts, and controlling our behavior, Spielberg’s unnerving vision of the future is fast becoming our reality.

Both worlds—our present-day reality and Spielberg’s celluloid vision of the future—are characterized by widespread surveillance, behavior prediction technologies, data mining, fusion centers, driverless cars, voice-controlled homes, facial recognition systems, cybugs and drones, and predictive policing (pre-crime) aimed at capturing would-be criminals before they can do any damage.

Surveillance cameras are everywhere. Government agents listen in on our telephone calls and read our emails. Political correctness—a philosophy that discourages diversity—has become a guiding principle of modern society.

The courts have shredded the Fourth Amendment’s protections against unreasonable searches and seizures. In fact, SWAT teams battering down doors without search warrants and FBI agents acting as a secret police that investigate dissenting citizens are common occurrences in contemporary America.

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We are increasingly ruled by multi-corporations wedded to the police state. Much of the population is either hooked on illegal drugs or ones prescribed by doctors. And bodily privacy and integrity has been utterly eviscerated by a prevailing view that Americans have no rights over what happens to their bodies during an encounter with government officials, who are allowed to search, seize, strip, scan, spy on, probe, pat down, taser, and arrest any individual at any time and for the slightest provocation.

All of this has come about with little more than a whimper from a clueless American populace largely comprised of nonreaders and television and Internet zombies. But we have been warned about such an ominous future in novels and movies for years.

The following 15 films may be the best representation of what we now face as a society.

Fahrenheit 451 (1966). Adapted from Ray Bradbury’s novel and directed by Francois Truffaut, this film depicts a futuristic society in which books are banned, and firemen ironically are called on to burn contraband books—451 Fahrenheit being the temperature at which books burn. Montag is a fireman who develops a conscience and begins to question his book burning. This film is an adept metaphor for our obsessively politically correct society where virtually everyone now pre-censors speech. Here, a brainwashed people addicted to television and drugs do little to resist governmental oppressors.

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). The plot of Stanley Kubrick’s masterpiece, as based on an Arthur C. Clarke short story, revolves around a space voyage to Jupiter. The astronauts soon learn, however, that the fully automated ship is orchestrated by a computer system—known as HAL 9000—which has become an autonomous thinking being that will even murder to retain control. The idea is that at some point in human evolution, technology in the form of artificial intelligence will become autonomous and that human beings will become mere appendages of technology. In fact, at present, we are seeing this development with massive databases generated and controlled by the government that are administered by such secretive agencies as the National Security Agency and sweep all websites and other information devices collecting information on average citizens. We are being watched from cradle to grave.

IRS Loses Cases

Planet of the Apes (1968). Based on Pierre Boulle’s novel, astronauts crash on a planet where apes are the masters and humans are treated as brutes and slaves. While fleeing from gorillas on horseback, astronaut Taylor is shot in the throat, captured and housed in a cage. From there, Taylor begins a journey wherein the truth revealed is that the planet was once controlled by technologically advanced humans who destroyed civilization. Taylor’s trek to the ominous Forbidden Zone reveals the startling fact that he was on planet earth all along. Descending into a fit of rage at what he sees in the final scene, Taylor screams: “We finally really did it. You maniacs! You blew it up! Damn you.” The lesson is obvious here, but will we listen? The script, although rewritten, was initially drafted by Rod Serling and retains Serling’s Twilight Zone-ish ending.

THX 1138 (1970). George Lucas’s directorial debut, this is a somber view of a dehumanized society totally controlled by a police state. The people are force-fed drugs to keep them passive, and they no longer have names but only letter/number combinations such as THX 1138. Any citizen who steps out of line is quickly brought into compliance by robotic police equipped with “pain prods”—electro-shock batons. Sound like tasers?

A Clockwork Orange (1971). Director Stanley Kubrick presents a future ruled by sadistic punk gangs and a chaotic government that cracks down on its citizens sporadically. Alex is a violent punk who finds himself in the grinding, crushing wheels of injustice. This film may accurately portray the future of Western society that grinds to a halt as oil supplies diminish, environmental crises increase, chaos rules, and the only thing left is brute force.

Soylent Green (1973). Set in a futuristic overpopulated New York City, the people depend on synthetic foods manufactured by the Soylent Corporation. A policeman investigating a murder discovers the grisly truth about what soylent green is really made of. The theme is chaos where the world is ruled by ruthless corporations whose only goal is greed and profit. Sound familiar?

Blade Runner (1982). In a 21st century Los Angeles, a world-weary cop tracks down a handful of renegade “replicants” (synthetically produced human slaves). Life is now dominated by mega-corporations, and people sleepwalk along rain-drenched streets. This is a world where human life is cheap, and where anyone can be exterminated at will by the police (or blade runners). Based upon a Philip K. Dick novel, this exquisite Ridley Scott film questions what it means to be human in an inhuman world.

Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984). The best adaptation of Orwell’s dark tale, this film visualizes the total loss of freedom in a world dominated by technology and its misuse, and the crushing inhumanity of an omniscient state. The government controls the masses by controlling their thoughts, altering history, and changing the meaning of words. Winston Smith is a doubter who turns to self-expression through his diary and then begins questioning the ways and methods of Big Brother before being re-educated in a most brutal fashion.

Brazil (1985). Sharing a similar vision of the near-future as 1984 and Franz Kafka’s novel The Trial, this is arguably director Terry Gilliam’s best work, one replete with a merging of the fantastic and stark reality. Here, a mother-dominated, hapless clerk takes refuge in flights of fantasy to escape the ordinary drabness of life. Caught within the chaotic tentacles of a police state, the longing for more innocent, free times lies behind the vicious surface of this film.

They Live (1988). John Carpenter’s bizarre sci-fi social satire action film assumes the future has already arrived. John Nada is a homeless person who stumbles across a resistance movement and finds a pair of sunglasses that enables him to see the real world around him. What he discovers is a world controlled by ominous beings who bombard the citizens with subliminal messages such as “obey” and “conform.” Carpenter manages to make an effective political point about the underclass—that is, everyone except those in power. The point: We, the prisoners of our devices, are too busy sucking up the entertainment trivia beamed into our brains and attacking each other up to start an effective resistance movement.

The Matrix (1999). The story centers on a computer programmer Thomas A. Anderson, secretly a hacker known by the alias “Neo,” who begins a relentless quest to learn the meaning of “The Matrix”—cryptic references that appear on his computer. Neo’s search leads him to Morpheus who reveals the truth that the present reality is not what it seems and that Anderson is actually living in the future—2199. Humanity is at war against technology, which has taken the form of intelligent beings, and Neo is actually living in The Matrix, an illusionary world that appears to be set in the present in order to keep the humans docile and under control. Neo soon joins Morpheus and his cohorts in a rebellion against the machines that use SWAT team tactics to keep things under control.

Minority Report (2002). Based on a short story by Philip K. Dick and directed by Steven Spielberg, the setting is 2054 where PreCrime, a specialized police unit, apprehends criminals before they can commit the crime. Captain Anderton is the chief of the Washington, DC, PreCrime force which uses future visions generated by “pre-cogs” (mutated humans with precognitive abilities) to stop murders. Soon Anderton becomes the focus of an investigation when the precogs predict he will commit a murder. But the system can be manipulated. This film raises the issue of the danger of technology operating autonomously—which will happen eventually if it has not already occurred. To a hammer, all the world looks like a nail. In the same way, to a police-state computer, we all look like suspects. In fact, before long, we all may be mere extensions or appendages of the police state—all suspects in a world commandeered by machines.

V for Vendetta (2006). This film depicts a society ruled by a corrupt and totalitarian government where everything is run by an abusive secret police. A vigilante named V dons a mask and leads a rebellion against the state. The subtext here is that authoritarian regimes through repression create their own enemies—that is, terrorists—forcing government agents and terrorists into a recurring cycle of violence. And who is caught in the middle? The citizens, of course. This film has a cult following among various underground political groups such as Anonymous, whose members wear the same Guy Fawkes mask as that worn by V.

Children of Men (2006). This film portrays a futuristic world without hope since humankind has lost its ability to procreate. Civilization has descended into chaos and is held together by a military state and a government that attempts to keep its totalitarian stronghold on the population. Most governments have collapsed, leaving Great Britain as one of the few remaining intact societies. As a result, millions of refugees seek asylum only to be rounded up and detained by the police. Suicide is a viable option as a suicide kit called Quietus is promoted on billboards and on television and newspapers. But hope for a new day comes when a woman becomes inexplicably pregnant.

Land of the Blind (2006). This dark political satire is based on several historical incidents in which tyrannical rulers were overthrown by new leaders who proved just as evil as their predecessors. Maximilian II is a demented fascist ruler of a troubled land named Everycountry who has two main interests: tormenting his underlings and running his country’s movie industry. Citizens who are perceived as questioning the state are sent to “re-education camps” where the state’s concept of reality is drummed into their heads. Joe, a prison guard, is emotionally moved by the prisoner and renowned author Thorne and eventually joins a coup to remove the sadistic Maximilian, replacing him with Thorne. But soon Joe finds himself the target of the new government.

All of these films—and the writers who inspired them—understood what many Americans, caught up in their partisan, flag-waving, zombified states, are still struggling to come to terms with: that there is no such thing as a government organized for the good of the people. Even the best intentions among those in government inevitably give way to the desire to maintain power and control at all costs.

Eventually, as I point out in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, even the sleepwalking masses (who remain convinced that all of the bad things happening in the police state—the police shootings, the police beatings, the raids, the roadside strip searches—are happening to other people) will have to wake up.

Sooner or later, the things happening to other people will start happening to us and our loved ones.

When that painful reality sinks in, it will hit with the force of a SWAT team crashing through your door, a taser being aimed at your stomach, and a gun pointed at your head. And there will be no channel to change, no reality to alter, and no manufactured farce to hide behind.

As George Orwell warned, “If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face forever.”

Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute. His book, Battlefield America: The War on the American People, is available from AFP  at www.americanfreepress.net or 1-888-699-6397. Whitehead can be contacted at johnw@rutherford.org.




Execution by Firing Squad: The Militarized Police State Opens Fire

The Second Amendment was enshrined in the Bill of Rights to the Constitution as a means to ensure that a well-armed populace would be able to defend itself against all domestic and foreign enemies. The U.S. government, however, has been pushing back against that, effectively authorizing law enforcement to prosecute and murder Americans for merely exercising their constitutional right to bear arms.

By John W. Whitehead

“It is often the case that police shootings, incidents where law enforcement officers pull the trigger on civilians, are left out of the conversation on gun violence. But a police officer shooting a civilian counts as gun violence. Every time an officer uses a gun against an innocent or an unarmed person contributes to the culture of gun violence in this country.”—Journalist Celisa Calacal

Legally owning a gun in America could get you killed by a government agent. While it still technically remains legal to own a firearm in America, possessing one can now get you pulled over, searched, arrested, subjected to all manner of surveillance, treated as a suspect without ever having committed a crime, shot at, and killed. This same rule does not apply to government agents, however, who are armed to the hilt and rarely given more than a slap on the wrist for using their weapons to shoot and kill American citizens.

According to The Washington Post, “1 in 13 people killed by guns are killed by police.”

Just recently, for example, a Minnesota jury acquitted a police officer who shot and killed 32-year-old Philando Castile, a school cafeteria supervisor, during a routine traffic stop merely because Castile disclosed that he had a gun in his possession, for which he had a lawful conceal-and-carry permit. That’s all it took for police to shoot Castile four times as he was reaching for his license and registration. Castile’s girlfriend and her four-year-old daughter witnessed the entire exchange.

Police State Books John Whitehead

Earlier this year, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit ruled that Florida police will not be held accountable for banging on the wrong door at 1:30 a.m., failing to identify themselves as police, and then repeatedly shooting and killing the innocent homeowner who answered the door while holding a gun in self defense. Although 26-year-old Andrew Scott had committed no crime and never fired a single bullet or lifted his firearm against police, he was gunned down by police who were investigating a speeding incident by engaging in a middle-of-the-night “knock and talk” in Scott’s apartment complex.

As attorney David French writes for the National Review, “Shooting an innocent man in his own home because he grabs a gun when an unidentified person pounds on his door or barges through it isn’t just an ‘unreasonable search or seizure.’ It’s a direct violation of his clearly established right to keep and bear arms.”

Continuing its own disturbing trend of siding with police in cases of excessive use of force, a unanimous Supreme Court recently acquitted police who recklessly fired 15 times into a backyard shack in which a homeless couple—Angel and Jennifer Mendez—was sheltering. Angel Mendez suffered numerous gunshot wounds, one of which required the amputation of his right leg below the knee, and his wife Jennifer was shot in the back. Incredibly, the court ruled that the Los Angeles County police officers’ use of force against the homeless couple was justified as a defensive action, because Angel was allegedly seen holding a BB gun that he used for shooting rats.

In yet another case, a Texas homeowner was subjected to a no-knock, SWAT-team style forceful entry and raid based solely on the suspicion that there were legally owned firearms in his household. Making matters worse, police panicked and opened fire through a solid wood door on the homeowner, who had already gone to bed.

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In Maryland, a Florida man traveling through the state with his wife and kids was stopped by a police officer and interrogated about the whereabouts of his registered handgun. Despite the man’s insistence that the handgun had been left at home, the officer spent nearly two hours searching through the couple’s car, patting them down along with their children, and having them sit in the back of a patrol car. No weapon was found.

In Philadelphia, a 25-year-old man was confronted by police, verbally threatened, and arrested for carrying a gun in public, which is legal within the city. When Mark Fiorino attempted to explain his rights under the law to police, police ordered him to get on his knees or else “I am gonna shoot ya.” Fiorino was later released without charges.

What these cases add up to is a new paradigm in which legally owning a gun turns you into a target for government sharp-shooters.

Ironically, while America continues to debate who or what is responsible for gun violence—the guns, the gun owners, or our violent culture—little has been said about the fact that the greatest perpetrator of violence in American society and around the world is the U.S. government.

Government violence is the missing link in the gun control debate.

Violence has become the government’s calling card, starting at the top and trickling down, from the more than 80,000 SWAT team raids carried out every year on unsuspecting Americans by heavily armed, black-garbed commandos and the increasingly rapid militarization of local police forces across the country to the drone killings used to target insurgents. The government even exports violence worldwide, with one of this country’s most profitable exports being weapons.

Thus, any serious discussion about minimizing the violence in our society needs to address the manner in which the government and its cohorts (the police, the various government agencies that are now armed to the hilt, the military, the defense contractors etc.) use violence as a means to an end, whether domestically or in matters of foreign policy.

You want to reduce gun violence? Start with the government.

Except that the government has no intention of scaling back on its weapons. To the contrary, the government’s efforts to militarize and weaponize its own agencies and employees is reaching epic proportions, with federal agencies as varied as the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration placing orders for hundreds of millions of rounds of hollow point bullets.

Talk about a double standard.

The government’s arsenal of weapons makes the average American’s handgun look like a Tinker Toy.

Under the auspices of a military “recycling” program, which allows local police agencies to acquire military-grade weaponry and equipment, more than $4.2 billion worth of equipment has been transferred from the Defense Department to domestic police agencies since 1990. Included among these “gifts” are tank-like, 20-ton Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, tactical gear, and assault rifles.

Ironically, while gun critics continue to clamor for bans on military-style assault weapons, high-capacity magazines and armor-piercing bullets, expanded background checks, and tougher gun-trafficking laws, the U.S. military boasts all of these and more, including some weapons the rest of the world doesn’t have.

Included in the government’s arsenal are armed, surveillance Reaper drones capable of reading a license plate from over two miles away; an AA12 Atchisson Assault Shotgun that can shoot five 12-gauge shells per second and “can fire up to 9,000 rounds without being cleaned or jamming”; an ADAPTIV invisibility cloak that can make a tank disappear or seemingly reshape it to look like a car; a PHASR rifle capable of blinding and disorienting anyone caught in its sights; a Taser shockwave that can electrocute a crowd of people at the touch of a button; an XM2010 enhanced sniper rifle with built-in sound and flash suppressors that can hit a man-sized target nine out of ten times from over a third of a mile away; and an XM25 “Punisher” grenade launcher that can be programmed to accurately shoot grenades at a target up to 500 meters away.

In the hands of government agents, whether they are members of the military, law enforcement or some other government agency, these weapons have become accepted instruments of tyranny, routine parts of America’s day-to-day life, a byproduct of the rapid militarization of law enforcement over the past several decades.

This lopsided, top-heavy, authoritarian state of affairs is not the balance of power the founders intended for “we the people.”

The Second Amendment, in conjunction with the multitude of prohibitions on government overreach enshrined in the Bill of Rights, was supposed to serve as a clear shackle on the government’s powers. As 20th century libertarian Edmund A. Opitz observed in 1964, “No one can read our Constitution without concluding that the people who wrote it wanted their government severely limited; the words ‘no’ and ‘not’ employed in restraint of government power occur 24 times in the first seven articles of the Constitution and 22 more times in the Bill of Rights.”

To founders such as Thomas Jefferson, who viewed the government as a powerful entity that must be bound “down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution,” the right to bear arms was no different from any other right enshrined in the Constitution: It was intended to stand as a bulwark against a police state.

Without any one of those freedoms, we are that much more vulnerable to the vagaries of out-of-control policemen, benevolent dictators, genuflecting politicians, and overly ambitious bureaucrats.

Writing for CounterPunch, journalist Kevin Carson suggests that prohibiting Americans from owning weapons would be as dangerously ineffective as Prohibition and the War on the Drugs:

[W]hat strict gun laws will do is take the level of police statism, lawlessness, and general social pathology up a notch in the same way Prohibition and the Drug War have done. I’d expect a War on Guns to expand the volume of organized crime, and to empower criminal gangs fighting over control over the black market, in exactly the same way Prohibition did in the 1920s and strict drug laws have done since the 1980s. I’d expect it to lead to further erosion of Fourth Amendment protections against search and seizure, further militarization of local police via SWAT teams, and further expansion of the squalid empire of civil forfeiture, perjured jailhouse snitch testimony, entrapment, planted evidence, and plea deal blackmail.

This is exactly what those who drafted the Constitution feared: that laws and law enforcers would be used as tools by a despotic government to wage war against the citizenry.

This phenomenon is what philosopher Abraham Kaplan referred to as the law of the instrument, which essentially says that to a hammer, everything looks like a nail. As I explain in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, we the citizenry have become the nails to be hammered by the government’s battalion of laws and law enforcers (its police officers, technicians, bureaucrats, spies, snitches, inspectors, accountants etc.), and we’re supposed to take the beatings without complaint or reproach.

Now don’t get me wrong. I do not sanction violence, nor do I believe that violence should ever be the answer to our problems. As John Lennon warned: “When it gets down to having to use violence, then you are playing the system’s game. The establishment will irritate you—pull your beard, flick your face—to make you fight. Because once they’ve got you violent, then they know how to handle you.”

Still there’s something to be said for George Orwell’s view that “that rifle hanging on the wall of the working-class flat or labourer’s cottage is the symbol of democracy. It is our job to see that it stays there.”

The Second Amendment serves as a check on the political power of the ruling authorities. It represents an implicit warning against governmental encroachments on one’s freedoms, the warning shot over the bow to discourage any unlawful violations of our persons or property.

Certainly, dictators in past regimes have understood this principle only too well.

As Adolf Hitler noted: “The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subject races to possess arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subject races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing.”

It should come as no surprise, then, that starting in December 1935, Jews in Germany were prevented from obtaining shooting licenses, because authorities believed that to allow them to do so would “endanger the German population.”

In late 1938, special orders were delivered barring Jews from owning firearms, with the punishment for arms possession being 20 years in a concentration camp.

The rest, as they say, is history. Yet it is a history that we should be wary of repeating.

Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute. His new book, Battlefield America: The War on the American People (SelectBooks, 2015) is available from the American Free Press bookstore. Whitehead can be contacted at johnw@rutherford.org.




Lynching Free Speech: The Intolerant State of America

We have been warned by numerous authors, not so long ago, as to what would happen to society if we acquiesced to the government’s fear mongering … Have we now quietly, obediently entered a Brave New American World of 1984? 

By John Whitehead

“What are the defenders of free speech to do? The sad fact is that this fundamental freedom is on its heels across America. Politicians of both parties want to use the power of government to silence their foes. Some in the university community seek to drive it from their campuses. And an entire generation of Americans is being taught that free speech should be curtailed as soon as it makes someone else feel uncomfortable. On the current trajectory, our nation’s dynamic marketplace of ideas will soon be replaced by either disengaged intellectual silos or even a stagnant ideological conformity. Few things would be so disastrous for our nation and the well-being of our citizenry.”—William Ruger, “Free Speech Is Central to Our Dignity as Humans

My hometown of Charlottesville, Va. has become the latest poster child in a heated war of words—and actions—over racism, “sanitizing history,” extremism (both right and left), political correctness, hate speech, partisan politics, and a growing fear that violent words will end in violent actions.

In Charlottesville, as in so many parts of the country right now, the conflict is over how to reconcile the nation’s checkered past, particularly as it relates to slavery, with the present need to sanitize the environment of anything—words and images—that might cause offense, especially if it’s a Confederate flag or monument.

In Charlottesville, that fear of offense prompted the city council to get rid of a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee that has graced one of its public parks for 82 years. In doing so, they have attracted the unwanted attention of the Ku Klux Klan.

Yale University actually went so far as to change the name of one of its residential colleges, which was named after John C. Calhoun, the nation’s seventh vice president, a secretary of state, secretary of war, senator, and Yale alum who supported slavery.

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New Orleans ran up a $2 million tab in its efforts to remove its four Confederate monuments, with the majority of the funds being used for security to police the ensuing protests and demonstrations.

With more than 1,000 Confederate monuments in 31 states (in public parks, courthouse squares, and state capitols), not to mention Confederate battle flags on display in military cemeteries, and countless more buildings and parks named after historic figures who were slaveholders, this isn’t an issue that is going away anytime soon, no matter how much we ignore it, shout over it, criminalize it, legislate it, adjudicate or police it.

The temperature is rising all across the nation, and not just over this Confederate issue.

The “winter of our discontent” has given way to an overheated, sweltering summer in which shouting matches are skating dangerously close to becoming physical altercations.

As journalist Dahlia Lithwick writes for Slate, “These days, people who used to feel free to shout and threaten are emboldened to punch, body-slam, and stab. It is a short hop, we are learning, from ‘words can never hurt us’ to actual sticks and stones and the attendant breaking of bones. That is what has become of free speech in this country.”

Here’s the thing: If Americans don’t learn how to get along—at the very least, agreeing to disagree and respecting each other’s right to subscribe to beliefs and opinions that may be offensive, hateful, intolerant or merely different—then we’re going to soon find that we have no rights whatsoever (to speak, assemble, agree, disagree, protest, opt in, opt out, or forge our own paths as individuals).

The government will lock down the nation at the slightest provocation.

It is ready, willing and able to impose martial law within 24 hours.

Indeed, the government has been anticipating and preparing for civil unrest for years now, as evidenced by the build-up of guns and tanks and militarized police and military training drills and threat assessments and extremism reports and surveillance systems and private prisons.

Connect the dots, people.

The government doesn’t care about who you voted for in the presidential election or whether you think the Civil War was fought over states’ rights versus slavery. It doesn’t care about your race or gender or religion or sexual orientation.

When the police state cracks down, it will not discriminate.

We’ll all be muzzled together.

We’ll all be jailed together.

We’ll all be viewed as a collective enemy to be catalogued, conquered, and caged.

Thus, the last thing we need to do is play into the government’s hands by turning on one another, turning in one another, and giving the government’s standing army an excuse to take over.

Gideon Elite book cover

The police state could not ask for a better citizenry than one that carries out its own censorship, spying, and policing.

This is how you turn a nation of free people into extensions of the omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent police state, and in the process turn a citizenry against each other. It’s a brilliant ploy, with the added bonus that while the citizenry remains focused on and distrustful of each other, they’re incapable of presenting a united front against the threats posed by the government and its cabal of Constitution-destroying agencies and corporate partners.

Unfortunately, we have already become a nation of snowflakes, snitches, and book burners: a legalistic, intolerant, elitist, squealing bystander nation eager to report fellow citizens to the police for the slightest offense.

Mind you, once the police are called in, with their ramped-up protocols, battlefield mindset, militarized weapons, uniforms and equipment, and war zone tactics, it’s a process that is near impossible to turn back and one that too often ends in tragedy for all those involved.

So how do we stop this train from barreling down the tracks past the police state and straight into martial law?

Let’s start with a little more patience, a lot more tolerance, and a civics lesson on the First Amendment.

As my good friend Nat Hentoff, that inveterate champion of the First Amendment, once observed, “The quintessential difference between a free nation, as we profess to be, and a totalitarian state, is that here everyone, including a foe of democracy, has the right to speak his mind.”

What this means is opening the door to more speech not less, even if that speech is offensive to some.

Understanding that freedom for those in the unpopular minority constitutes the ultimate tolerance in a free society, James Madison, the author of the Bill of Rights, fought for a First Amendment that protected the “minority” against the majority, ensuring that even in the face of overwhelming pressure, a minority of one—even one who espouses distasteful viewpoints—would still have the right to speak freely, pray freely, assemble freely, challenge the government freely, and broadcast his views in the press freely.

We haven’t done ourselves—or the nation—any favors by becoming so fearfully polite, careful to avoid offense, and largely unwilling to be labeled intolerant, hateful or closed-minded that we’ve eliminated words, phrases, and symbols from public discourse.

The result is a nation where no one really says what they really think anymore, at least if it runs counter to the prevailing views. Intolerance is the new scarlet letter of our day, a badge to be worn in shame and humiliation, deserving of society’s fear, loathing, and utter banishment from society.

For those who dare to voice an opinion that runs counter to the accepted norms, retribution is swift: They are shamed, shouted down, silenced, censored, fired, cast out, and generally relegated to the dust heap of ignorant, mean-spirited bullies who are guilty of various “word crimes.”

We have entered a new age where, as commentator Mark Steyn notes, “we have to tiptoe around on ever thinner eggshells,” and “the forces of ‘tolerance’ are intolerant of anything less than full-blown celebratory approval.”

In such a climate of intolerance, there can be no freedom of speech, expression or thought.

We have become a nation of snowflakes.

We have allowed our fears—fear for our safety, fear of each other, fear of being labeled racist or hateful or prejudiced, etc.—to trump our freedom of speech and muzzle us far more effectively than any government edict could. Ultimately the war on free speech—and that’s exactly what it is, a war being waged by Americans against other Americans—is a war that is driven by fear.

By bottling up dissent, we have created a pressure cooker of stifled misery and discontent that is now bubbling over and fomenting even more hate, distrust, and paranoia among portions of the populace.

The First Amendment is a steam valve. It allows people to speak their minds, air their grievances, and contribute to a larger dialogue that hopefully results in a more just world.

When there is no steam valve to release the pressure, frustration builds, anger grows, and people become more volatile and desperate to force a conversation.

The problem as I see it is that we’ve allowed ourselves to be persuaded that we need someone else to think and speak for us. The result is a society in which we’ve stopped debating among ourselves, stopped thinking for ourselves, and stopped believing that we can fix our own problems and resolve our own differences.

Not only has free speech become a “politically incorrect” four-letter word—profane, obscene, uncouth, not to be uttered in so-called public places—but in more and more cases, the government deems free speech to be downright dangerous and in some instances illegal.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, the U.S. government has become particularly intolerant of speech that challenges the government’s power, reveals the government’s corruption, exposes the government’s lies, and encourages the citizenry to push back against the government’s many injustices. Indeed, there is a long and growing list of the kinds of speech that the government considers dangerous enough to red flag and subject to censorship, surveillance, investigation, and prosecution: hate speech, bullying speech, intolerant speech, conspiratorial speech, treasonous speech, threatening speech, incendiary speech, inflammatory speech, radical speech, anti-government speech, right-wing speech, extremist speech, etc.

The powers-that-be understand that if the government can control speech, it controls thought, and, in turn, it can control the minds of the citizenry. In fact, some of this past century’s greatest dystopian authors warned of this very danger.

In Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, reading is banned and books are burned in order to suppress dissenting ideas, while televised entertainment is used to anesthetize the populace and render them easily pacified, distracted, and controlled.

In Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, serious literature, scientific thinking, and experimentation are banned as subversive, while critical thinking is discouraged through the use of conditioning, social taboos, and inferior education. Likewise, expressions of individuality, independence, and morality are viewed as vulgar and abnormal.

In George Orwell’s 1984, Big Brother does away with all undesirable and unnecessary words and meanings, even going so far as to routinely rewrite history and punish “thoughtcrimes.”

And in almost every episode of Twilight Zone, Rod Serling urged viewers to unlock their minds and free themselves of prejudice, hate, violence, and fear. “We’re developing a new citizenry,” Serling declared, “one that will be very selective about cereals and automobiles, but won’t be able to think.”

It’s time to start thinking for ourselves again.

It’s time to start talking to each other. It’s time to start listening more and shouting less.

Most of all, it’s time to start acting like people who will choose dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery.

As Dahlia Lithwick concluded for Slate:

To guarantee an escape from conflict, from violence, requires censorship. To have free speech in this moment, when the stakes are so high, is to live with fear. This is not an easy thing to confront—or to accept… Conversation might still be our best chance of getting out of this mess. Free speech is just free speech. It takes actual humans making the effort to talk to each other to transform speech into something more vital and more valuable. Conversations don’t always work. They may sometimes go wrong—horribly, terribly wrong… The First Amendment will never be able to protect us from horrible words and horrific acts. It does guarantee that we’ll keep talking.

Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute. His book, Battlefield America: The War on the American People, is available from AFP at http://www.americanfreepress.net/ or 1-888-699-6397. Whitehead can be contacted at johnw@rutherford.org.




Will the Trump Administration Overdose on Authoritarianism?

Not only is the war on drugs unconstitutional, it also leads to richer and more powerful black-market drug cartels, increased violence, more lethal drugs, destruction of individual civil liberties both in the U.S. and abroad, and violates the bedrock of a free society—the nonaggression principle. President Trump has instructed his attorney general to “seek the maximum penalty” for even nonviolent drug-related offenses. Time will tell whether he’ll direct Sessions to violate states’ rights to determine their own drug laws as well.

By Ron Paul

Last week Attorney General Jeff Sessions ordered federal prosecutors in drug cases to seek the maximum penalty authorized by federal mandatory minimum sentencing laws. Sessions’s order represents a setback to the progress made toward restoring compassion and common sense to the sentencing process over the past few years. Sessions’s action also guarantees that many nonviolent drug law offenders will continue spending more time in prison than murderers.

Sessions’s support for mandatory minimums is no surprise, as he has a history of fanatical devotion to the drug war. Sessions’s pro-drug war stance is at odds with the reality of the drug war’s failure. Over 40 years after President Nixon declared war on drugs, the government cannot even keep drugs out of prisons!

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As was the case with alcohol prohibition, the drug war has empowered criminal gangs and even terrorists to take advantage of the opportunity presented by prohibition to profit by meeting the continued demand for drugs. Drug prohibition enables these criminal enterprises to make profits far above the potential profits if drugs where legalized. Ironically, the so-called “law-and-order” politicians who support the drug war are helping enrich the very criminals they claim to oppose!

The war on drugs also makes street drugs more lethal by incentivizing the creation of more potent and, thus, more dangerous drugs. Of course, even as Sessions himself admits, the war on drugs also leads to increased violence, as drug dealers cannot go to the courts to settle disputes among themselves or with their customers.

Before 9/11, the war on drugs was the go-to excuse used to justify new infringements on liberty. For example, laws limiting our ability to withdraw, or even carry, large sums of cash and laws authorizing civil asset forfeiture were justified by the need to crack down on drug dealers and users. The war on drugs is also the root cause of the criminal justice system’s disparate treatment of minorities and the militarization of local police.

Liberty Stickers

The war on drugs is a war on the Constitution as well. The Constitution does not give the federal government authority to regulate, much less ban, drugs. People who doubt this should ask themselves why it was necessary to amend the Constitution to allow the federal government to criminalize drinking alcohol but not necessary to amend the Constitution to criminalize drug use.

Today, a majority of states have legalized medical marijuana, and a growing number are legalizing recreational marijuana use. Enforcement of federal laws outlawing marijuana in those states is the type of federal interference with state laws that conservatives usually oppose. Hopefully, in this area the Trump administration will exercise restraint and respect state marijuana laws.

Sessions’s announcement was not the only pro-drug war announcement made by the administration this week. President Trump himself, in a meeting with the president of Colombia, promised to continue U.S. intervention in South and Central America to eliminate drug cartels. President Trump, like his attorney general, seems to not understand that the rise of foreign drug cartels, like the rise of domestic drug gangs, is a consequence of U.S. drug policy.

The use of government force to stop adults from putting certain substances into their bodies—whether marijuana, saturated fats, or raw milk—violates the nonaggression principle that is the bedrock of a free society. Therefore, all those who care about protecting individual liberty and limiting government power should support ending the drug war. Those with moral objections to drug use should realize that education and persuasion, carried out through voluntary institutions like churches and schools, is a more moral and effective way to discourage drug use than relying on government force.

Ron Paul, a former U.S. representative from Texas and medical doctor, continues to write his weekly column for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, online at www.ronpaulinstitute.org.