April 8, 2013

By: Kelly Diamond, Editor

The Cypriot Deal turned a lot of heads and woke quite a few folks up to governments’ propensity to just TAKE private assets under some alarmist guise, and hopefully now, Americans will take more seriously the intentions of our own DHS and their moves toward confiscating our assets.

Objectively observing the DHS’ activities of late, one can’t help but wonder what they intend to find or achieve in confiscating private and secured property from people’s safe deposit boxes.

DHS Goes for Your Safety Deposit BoxTypically, when I see folks stocking up on things, it’s because they are preparing for something.  It’s not arbitrary.  Stocking up on coupons?  Probably getting ready to go shopping.  Stocking up on dry goods and batteries?  Probably in anticipation for the next natural disaster.  Saving money?  Probably so they don’t lose their asses if one of them gets laid off.  It’s not without cause or reason that they take these measures.  So, when I see federal agencies, like the DHS (Department of Homeland Security) stock piling stuff like 1.6 Billion rounds of hollow-point ammunition, or 7,000 assault rifles, or 3,000 mine-resistant armored vehicles, my curiosity is peaked.

First off, the DHS only operates domestically and hollow-points are illegal to use in international wars.  That leaves me with little option but to believe all that is for us!  Second, the DHS has a penchant for seeking out folks who speak out against the government.  They are careful, however, to make the distinction: they are NOT spying on Americans, only the anti-government ones.  The DHS funded a $12 Million “study” through The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism at the University of Maryland to adequately define a terrorist.  Turns out, folks who are “suspicious of centralized federal authority” and “reverent of individual liberty” pose a threat.

So here’s my question: How do you determine who the anti-government Americans are without first spying on ALL Americans?  And how do you effectively dispel the feeling that government is imposing on an individual’s way of life, by imposing on their way of life?  And since when has exercising one’s right to free-speech been demonstrative of domestic terrorism?

Remember when Shaq decided to espouse a litany of smears against Kobe, but when he was called out, he said it fell under the umbrella of “free stylin’”… so it didn’t really count?  Well, consider the Patriot Act the DHS’ “free stylin’” trump card.  If someone writes a whitepaper defining “terrorism” or “terrorists” as Americans “reverent of individual liberty”, then that’s all the DHS needs to dive in.

As if being spied on weren’t enough, the DHS feels emboldened to search, photograph and confiscate stuff from your safe deposit box.  No warrants.  No notice.  And the bank cannot even tell you if your safe deposit box was searched, lest they aid and abet a “suspected domestic terrorist”!  Here is a partial list of terror tools: “bar gold, gold coins, firearms of any kind unless manufactured prior to 1878, documents such as passports or foreign bank account records, pornography or any material that, in the opinion of the agent, shall be deemed of to be of a contraband nature.”

Are these possessions really unique to domestic terrorists?  (By terrorists, I mean the actual threat to society kind… not the ones who just think contrary to the current administration.)  Does any of this serve as concrete — or even circumstantial — evidence indicative of intent to violate anyone’s rights or overthrow the government?  I look at that stuff and see a person who wants to FLEE the government, not overthrow it.

A subcommittee of the US Senate held a two-year investigation into these “Fusion Centers” of the DHS (i.e. the ones that go on these involved fishing expeditions), and their findings were similar to my own sentiments: “In reality, the Subcommittee investigation found that the fusion centers often produced irrelevant, useless or inappropriate intelligence reporting to DHS, and many produced no intelligence reporting whatsoever”.  Of course, it took me two minutes to come to this same conclusion, but the point is, we have federal agents snooping around for no particular reason other than they may be able to tie some smut to a terrorist one day.  That’s like a cop suspecting every woman of being a prostitute because she’s equipped with everything she needs to carry out the deed!  So she has the means!  All that is left is motive and opportunity!  THIS is what passes for law enforcement now?  It’s like they are looking for a civil war: they are building their munitions, taking a Wilsonian approach to “domestic threat”… Well, shoot!  They’ve got means and motive!  Seems they are just waiting for the right opportunity… to do what?  Who knows?

If history is any indication, we could be in for a bumpy ride! When Woodrow Wilson was at the helm, Congress passed the Espionage Act and the Sedition Act.  The postmaster had the ability to censor newspapers by denying them delivery if the content therein did not tow the administration’s line, and ultimately drove them to bankruptcy.  It escalated to a point where private citizens were helping to abridge dissenters’ speech either by disrupting rallies and attacking their speakers, or reporting their own neighbors!  Nearly 2,000 individuals arrested, and approximately 1,200 jailed for dissenting against the Wilson administration.  Those convicted faced onerous fines and up to TWENTY YEARS in jail for protesting World War 1.

Basically, they watch all of us.  The ones that grumble about the government get a little more attention.  The ones who openly wear their dissent like a badge of honor and have the misfortune of having a safe deposit box, may get a little surprise clandestine visit from the folks at DHS.  Hey, if a sixteen year old boy doing a school project on Ron Paul is deserving of a visit from the FBI, SURELY a grown adult with a “don’t tread on me” sticker on their truck should at the very least get his stuff rifled through!

So it’s out there: the justification for the United States Government to confiscate property for no reason whatsoever.  Much like the Cyprus deal, no matter how exceptional they insist the practice will be, it never stays that way.  Why would it?  What contains or restrains their actions?  A law?  Like the ones in the constitution that never stood a chance in stopping the likes of the Patriot Act from passing in the first place?  Cyprus’ excuse to confiscate property was “saving the economy”.  Our excuse is “safety”.  Nothing like a good crisis, to help get all those pesky rights out of the way.