Saturday, December 29, 2007

**A List of Fox's sponsors** HIT THEM WHERE IT HURTS!

From dailypaul.com:

Please add other sponsors or additional contact info in the comments.

• Crest Whitestrips & Dawn (both Proctor & Gamble) 513-983-1100
• Delphi (Driving Products) 1.888.809.9800
• Mercedes Benz 1-800-367-6372
• Comcast 1-800-COMCAST
• Subaru 1-800-782-2783
• GMC Suv's 1-800-551-4123
• Best Buy 1-888-237-8289
• Travelocity 1 888.872.8356
• Capzasin 1 (423) 822-5020
• New Phase
• Orbitz 1-888-656-4546
• Ditech.com 1-800-DITECH-3
• eloan.com (415) 786-3317
• Toyota 1 800-331-4331
• Centrum (Wyeth) 1-800-322-3129
• Nextel (aka Sprint)1-800-639-6111
• Vehix.com 1.866.698.3449
• Gold Bond (Chattum) 423-821-4571
• Aspercreme " "
• webmd.com via email or webmd.com via other (212) 624-3700
• American Express 1-877-877-0987, 1-800-525-3355
• Holiday Inn Express 1 800-315-2621
• M Professional unk
• priceline.com 1-800-774-2354
• L. L. Bean 1-800-441-7513
• Jet Dry (Dishwasher Products) 1-800-820-8939
Chemistry (Matchmaking Web Site)
Bankrate.com (Mortgages)
Cars Direct.com

Friday, December 21, 2007

The Official Media Guide to Attacking Ron Paul

Liberty Maven has uncovered a letter from the office of the “Main Stream Media Czar”. Unfortunately, the letter was not signed by name, only title. We didn’t even know there was such a thing as a “Main Stream Media Czar” prior to discovering this letter. My only reaction to this letter was, “it all makes so much sense now.” Here is the letter itself, transcribed word for word.


We in the main stream media all know that Ron Paul cannot win the presidency because of his extremist views. Given this fact, it is important we don’t allow him the same media coverage as our preferred candidates. It is true that we must give him some coverage, but it is also true that we must adhere to the “Mass Media Ron Paul Rule” when giving him coverage during this campaign season. Generally, the “Mass Media Ron Paul Rule” can be summed up in two words:

Marginalize him.

Here are some wonderful tactics to utilize when applying the “Mass Media Ron Paul Rule:

Continually label him as a long shot candidate. This is the most important of all the tactics so we list it first. Sure, it is true that Ron Paul has won or placed high in many straw polls across the country but we must never mention it. Instead, in every article or television news story copy we should use one or more of the terms “dark horse”, “long shot”, “barely registering in the polls”, “quixotic”, or “gadfly”. If we can do this consistently, our job is complete.

Attack his supporters. Ron Paul has a stellar personal record with his marriage of over 50 years, 5 children, and 18 grandchildren. His political record is also exemplary with him never voting to raise taxes and always voting in accordance with the Constitution. Because of this, attacking him on his record is a daunting task. The best method to marginalize him is to attack his supporters. This can be accomplished by calling his supporters names like “kooky”, “crazy”, “conspiracy nutjobs”, “paultards”, and the like. This is classic “guilt by association” and works well on the apathetic electorate.

Call him “Libertarian” as much as possible. Continually giving him the libertarian label is a great covert method of Ron Paul marginalization. This reinforces that he’s not really a Republican even though he has held office as a Republican for 10 terms. We find that if you are in radio or television you may even say the word “libertarian” using a negative tone during questions. This perpetuates the extremism inherent in Ron Paul’s policies even though the word libertarian simply means: one who believes in liberty.

Continually ask him if he’s planning on running as a third party candidate. This tactic should be used often. It accomplishes two things. First, it suggests that he is not a serious candidate for the Republican party. Second, it will get him on record as saying he won’t run for a third party. If he should happen to run third party at a later date he can be attacked for changing his position.

Ask him if he would support the GOP nominee if he doesn’t win. Ron Paul is against the Iraq war and wishes to bring the troops home from overseas in order to help stem the tide of government overspending. This makes him different than all of the other Republican candidates who support keeping our troops overseas indefinitely. As media we must make all attempts to not only marginalize his candidacy, but also marginalize his steadfast message of linking the cost of the war on terror to our economic woes here at home.

Focus on his campaign strategy rather than his message. Ron Paul’s message of freedom, prosperity, and peace should be overshadowed by talk of his successful grassroots campaign. The more we focus on how he raises money and the types of supporters he has, the less time he has to talk about his message that is sure to resonate with most Americans. We must make all attempts to block or cloud that message. If it were to get out, it could spell doom for our chosen candidates.

Attack him for not returning donations from fringe supporters. White supremacists and prostitutes have donated money to Ron Paul and that is bad. We can use our political correctness and superior morality as a weapon and ask him why does he not return that donation money. After all a white supremacist would do more good with having an extra $500 in his pocket than a doctor who has delivered over 4000 babies while preaching peace and equal rights for everyone.

Abolishing the IRS is crazy. Attacking his stance on abolishing the IRS and replacing it with nothing is also effective. After all most Americans don’t know that we could do without the income tax if we just went back to the same level of government spending that we had in the 1990’s. A great method is to reply to his answer with an incredulous “replace it with NOTHING? How can the government function?” comment. This tactic will scare people into believing in how the government always has our best interests at heart. It will help people ignore the fact that Ron Paul also wants to cut government spending drastically in order to balance the budget.

Label him an isolationist for his foreign policy views. Since he wants to bring our troops home from not just Iraq, but all of the 130 other occupied countries he should be deemed an isolationist. It doesn’t matter that Ron Paul wants free trade and travel with other countries and thus is not truly an isolationist. The people will believe what we tell them to believe.

This directive gives us several tactics to be used in the fight against Ron Paul’s candidacy for president. We should use them all and use them often. After all Ron Paul’s message of freedom, prosperity, and peace is antiquated and has no place in our authoritarian world.

Sincerely,

The Main Stream Media Czar


read more | digg story

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Bill of Rights Under Bush: A Timeline

Just so we remember how we got where we are:

2001

January

Presidential directive delays indefinitely the scheduled release of presidential documents (authorized by the Presidential Records Act of 1978) pertaining to the Reagan-Bush administration. Link

Bush and Cheney begin process of radically broadening scope of documents and information which can be deemed classified. Link

February

The National Security Agency (NSA) sets up Project Groundbreaker, a domestic call monitoring program infrastructure. Link

Spring

Bush administration order authorizes NSA monitoring of domestic phone and internet traffic. Link

May

US Supreme Court rules that medical necessity is not a permissible defense against federal marijuana statutes. Link

September

In immediate aftermath of 9-11 terror attacks, Department of Justice authorizes detention without charge for any terror suspects. Over one thousand suspects are brought into detention over the next several months. Link (pdf)

October

Attorney General John Ashcroft announces change in Department of Justice (DOJ) policy. According to the new policy DOJ will impose far more stringent criteria for the granting of Freedom of Information Act requests. Link

September-October

NSA launches massive new database of information on US phone calls. Link

October

The USA Patriot Act becomes law. Among other things the law: makes it a crime for anyone to contribute money or material support for any group on the State Department’s Terror Watch List, allows the FBI to monitor and tape conversations between attorneys and clients, allows the FBI to order librarians to turn over information about patron’s reading habits, allows the government to conduct surveillance on internet and email use of US citizens without notice. The act also calls for expanded use of National Security Letters (NSLs), which allow the FBI to search telephone, email and financial records of US citizens without a court order, exempts the government from needing to reveal how evidence against suspected terrorists was obtained and authorizes indefinite detention of immigrants at the discretion of law enforcement and immigration authorities.

NJ Superior court judge and civil liberties scholar Anthony Napolitano, author of A Nation of Sheep, has described the law’s assault on first and fourth amendment principles as follows, “The Patriot Act’s two most principle constitutional errors are an assault on the Fourth Amendment, and on the First. It permits federal agents to write their own search warrants [under the name “national security letters”] with no judge having examined evidence and agreed that it’s likely that the person or thing the government wants to search will reveal evidence of a crime… Not only that, but the Patriot Act makes it a felony for the recipient of a self-written search warrant to reveal it to anyone. The Patriot Act allows [agents] to serve self-written search warrants on financial institutions, and the Intelligence Authorization Act of 2004 in Orwellian language defines that to include in addition to banks, also delis, bodegas, restaurants, hotels, doctors' offices, lawyers’ offices, telecoms, HMOs, hospitals, casinos, jewelry dealers, automobile dealers, boat dealers, and that great financial institution to which we all would repose our fortunes, the post office. Link 1 | Link 2

November

Executive order limits release of presidential documents. The order gives incumbent presidents the right to veto requests to open any past presidential records and supercedes the congressionally passed law of 1978 mandating release of all presidential records not explicitly deemed classified. Link

2002

Winter

FBI and Department of Defense (DOD), forbidden by law from compiling databases on US citizens, begin contracting with private database firm ChoicePoint to collect, store, search and maintain data. Link

Spring

Secret executive order issued authorizing NSA to wiretap the phones and read emails of US citizens. Link

Spring

Transportation Security Adminstration (TSA) acknowledges it has created both a “No Fly” and a separate “Watch” list of US travelers. Link

May

Department of Justice authorizes the FBI to monitor political and religious groups. The new rules permit the FBI to broadly search or monitor the internet for evidence of criminal activity without having any tips or leads that a specific criminal act has been committed. Link

June

Supreme Court upholds the right of school administrators to conduct mandatory drug testing of students without probable cause. Link

November

Homeland Security Act of 2002 establishes separate Department of Homeland Security. Among other things the department will federally coordinate for the first time all local and state law enforcement nationwide and run a Directorate of Information and Analysis with authority to compile comprehensive data on US citizens using public and commercial records including credit card, phone, bank, and travel. The department also will be exempt form Freedom of Information Act disclosure requirements. The Homeland Security department’s jurisdiction has been widely criticized for being nebulously defined and has extended beyond terrorism into areas including immigration, pornography and drug enforcement. Link 1 | Link 2

2003

February

Draft of Domestic Security Enhancement Act (aka Patriot Act 2), a secret document prepared by the Department of Justice is leaked by the Center for Public Integrity. Provisions of the February 7th draft version included:

Removal of court-ordered prohibitions against police agencies spying on domestic groups.

The FBI would be granted powers to conduct searches and surveillance based on intelligence gathered in foreign countries without first obtaining a court order.

Creation of a DNA database of suspected terrorists.

Prohibition of any public disclosure of the names of alleged terrorists including those who have been arrested.

Exemptions from civil liability for people and businesses who voluntarily turn private information over to the government.

Criminalization of the use of encryption to conceal incriminating communications.

Automatic denial of bail for persons accused of terrorism-related crimes, reversing the ordinary common law burden of proof principle. All alleged terrorists would be required to demonstrate why they should be released on bail rather than the government being required to demonstrate why they should be held.

Expansion of the list of crimes eligible for the death penalty.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency would be prevented from releasing "worst case scenario" information to the public about chemical plants.

United States citizens whom the government finds to be either members of, or providing material support to, terrorist groups could have their US citizenship revoked and be deported to foreign countries.

Although the bill itself has never (yet) been advanced in congress due to public exposure, some of its provisions have become law as parts of other bills. For example The Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004 grants the FBI unprecedented power to obtain records from financial institutions without requiring permission from a judge. Under the law, the FBI does not need to seek a court order to access such records, nor does it need to prove just cause. Link 1 | Link 2

March

Executive order issued which radically tightens the declassification process of classified government documents, as well as making it far easier for government agencies to make and keep information classified. The order delayed by three years the release of declassified government documents dating from 1978 or earlier. It also allowed the government to treat all material sent to American officials from foreign governments -- no matter how routine -- as subject to classification, and expanded the ability of Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to shield documents from declassification. Finally it gave the vice president the power to classify information. Link 1 | Link 2

March

In a ruling seen as a victory for the concentration of ownership of intellectual property and an erosion of the public domain, the Supreme Court in Eldred v. Ashcroft held that a 20-year extension of the copyright period (from 50 years after the death of the author to 70 years) called for by the Sonny Bono copyright Extension not violate either the Copyright Clause or the First Amendment. Link

April

In Demore v. Kim, the Supreme Court ruled that even permanent residents could be subject to mandatory detention when facing deportation based on a prior criminal conviction, without any right to an individualized hearing to determine whether they were dangerous or a flight risk. Link

Fall

The FBI changes its traditional policy of destroying all data and documents collected on innocent citizens in the course of criminal investigations. This information would, according to the bureau, now be permanently stored. Two years later in late 2005 Executive Order 13388, expanded access to those files for "state, local and tribal" governments and for "appropriate private sector entities," which are not defined. Link 1 | Link 2

Fall

As authorized by the Patriot Act, the FBI expands the practice of national security letters. NSLs, originally introduced in the 1970s for espionage and terrorism investigations, enabled the FBI to review in secret the customer records of suspected foreign agents. This was extended by the Patriot Act to include permitting clandestine scrutiny of all U.S. residents and visitors whether suspected of terrorism or not. Link

2004

January

The FBI begins keeping a database of US citizens based on information obtained via NSLs. Link

Spring

John Ashcroft invokes State Secrets privilege to forbid former FBI translator Sibel Edmunds from testifying in a case brought by families of victims of the 9-11 attacks. Litigation by 9-11 families is subsequently halted. Link 1 | Link 2

June

Supreme Court upholds Nevada state law allowing police to arrest suspects who refuse to provide identification based on police discretion of “reasonable suspicion.” Link

2005

January

Supreme court rules that police do not need to have probable cause to have drug sniffing dogs examine cars stopped for routine traffic violations. Link 1 | Link 2

June

Supreme Court rules that the federal government can prosecute medical marijuana users even in states which have laws permitting medical marijuana. Link

Summer

The Patriot Act, due to expire at the end of 2005, is reauthorized by Congress. Link

Winter 2005

Senate blocks reauthorization of certain clauses in Patriot Act. Link

2006

March

Senate passes amended version of Patriot Act, reauthorization, with three basic changes from the original including: recipients of secret court orders to turn over sensitive information on individuals linked to terrorism investigations are not allowed to disclose those orders but can challenge the gag order after a year, libraries would not be required to turn over information without the approval of a judge, recipients of an FBI "national security letter" -- an investigator's demand for access to personal or business information -- would not have to tell the FBI if they consult a lawyer. New bill also said to extend Congressional oversight over executive department usage guidelines. Shortly after bill is signed George Bush declares oversight rules are not binding. Link 1 | Link 2

June

Supreme court rules that evidence obtained in violation of the “knock and announce” rules can still be permitted in court. Link

September

US Congress and Senate approve the Military Commissions Act, which authorizes torture and strips non- US citizen detainees suspected of terrorist ties of the right of habeas corpus (which includes formal charges, counsel and hearings). It also empowers US presidents at their discretion to declare US citizens as enemy combatants and subject to detention without charge or due process. Link 1 | Link 2 | Link 3

October

John Warner Defense Authorization Act is passed. The act allows a president to declare a public emergency and station US military troops anywhere in America as well as take control of state based national guard units without consent of the governor or other local authorities. The law authorizes presidential deployment of US troops to round-up and detain “potential terrorists”, “illegal aliens” and “disorderly” citizenry. Link 1 | Link 2

2007

May

National Security Presidential Directive 51 (NSPD-51) establishes a new post-disaster plan (with disaster defined as any incident, natural or man-made, resulting in extraordinary mass casualties, damage or disruption) which places the president in charge of all three branches of government. The directive overrides the National Emergencies Act which gives Congress power to determine the duration of a national emergency. Link 1 | Link 2

June

In “Bong Hits for Jesus” case Supreme court rules that student free speech rights do not extend to promotion of drug use. Link

July

Executive Order 13438: "Blocking Property of Certain Persons Who Threaten Stabilization Efforts in Iraq, issued. The order asserts the government’s power to confiscate the property “of persons determined to have committed, or to pose a significant risk of committing, an act or acts of violence that have the purpose or effect of threatening the peace or stability of Iraq or the Government of Iraq or undermining efforts to promote economic reconstruction and political reform in Iraq or to provide humanitarian assistance to the Iraqi people."

October

The Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Act passes the House of Representatives 400 to 6 (to be voted on in the Senate in 2008). The act proposes the establishment of a commission composed of members of the House and Senate, Homeland Security and others, to "examine and report upon the facts and causes of violent radicalization, homegrown terrorism, and ideologically based violence in the United States” and specifically the role of the internet in fostering and disseminating extremism. According to the bill the term `violent radicalization' means the process of adopting or promoting an extremist belief system for the purpose of facilitating ideologically based violence to advance political, religious, or social change, while the term 'ideologically-based violence' means the use, planned use, or threatened use of force or violence by a group or individual to promote the group or individual's political, religious, or social beliefs.” Link 1 | Link 2 | Link 3

Vote for this on Digg | Reddit

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Joe Scarborough interviews Ron Paul 12/18

Thank you Joe Scarborough for showing proper respect to the doctor. You are a refreshing change from the MSM robots.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Top 10 Reasons to Overthrow Your Government

From openjesus.org:
The Top 10 Reasons to Overthrow Your Government

10. The “Two Party System” is not democratic. Democrats and Republicans work hard together to keep additional parties from gaining momentum, even to the point of staging presidential debates themselves to lock other candidates out (ask anyone from the League of Women Voters, they’ll explain it). Any party which operates over a long period of time becomes irreparably corrupt, as do the individuals who come from those parties.

9. The War on Drugs is unjust. First and foremost, the full text of the 10th Amendment of the Bill of Rights states, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.” If the Constitution doesn’t call for something as a specific function of the federal government then it can’t get involved. Anyone locked up on a federal drug charge is well aware of their actual status as political prisoner. Besides being an absolute violation of the Constitution itself, the War on Drugs is largely unjust because it is the primary tool by which people are commoditized for use in the prison system, which brings me to my next point.

8. Your prison system is random and for-profit. Based on the existing laws, more than half of all Americans are already criminals. Obscure, rarely-enforced, and sometimes unjust laws are used to maintain a massive prison population for the sole purpose of generating continuous profit for the bloated justice system and corporations which supply and maintain penitentiaries. Your government has put capitalism above human rights by regulating crime as a lottery system where you are the ticket and prison is the prize.

7. The illusion of safety. The Constitution outlines only a few legitimate functions of the federal government, one of which is to “provide for the common defense.” Instead of providing this Constitutionally-mandated function, however, your federal government makes you take your shoes off and steals your deodorant before you can board an airplane.

6. The government is intentionally keeping you stupid. Not that it matters anymore, but the federal government does not have the Constitutional power to mandate or involve itself in any way with education. Why is it that children are not provided the most basic education, that the United States continues to fall behind in science, and that very few of you even recognize the flagrant criminality in your own “elected” officials? An uneducated population is a docile population, at least on the political front. Eighty percent of you probably couldn’t tell me what a federalist is, but that’s not your fault.

5. The Internet. The most functional tool for the spread of Democracy in the history of mankind (perhaps excepting the Maxim gun) is under assault by communications companies attempting to remove its core neutrality, and your government is barely resisting. In fact, some might go so far as to suggest that your government is actually complying in this effort. Given the government’s track record with education, insurance, and finances, I’d say the Internet in its current state has about six months to live. As a side note, China also imposes federal controls in the Internet.

4. Your government spies on you. If you told General George Washington that the federal government of the United States of America was tapping phones, snatching emails, and laying down more complex infrastructure to collect the daily lives of Americans he would join Al-Qaeda. The 4th Amendment makes it extremely clear that personal privacy is not to be violated by any level of government. There is no excuse for this type of behavior.

3. You could get arrested for even reading this. Voiced dissent has always been critical to the democratic process, but ruminations unsupportive of the political status quo will always be something of a target to those wield the dual blades of power and corruption. To quote Thomas Jefferson, “The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions, that I wish it to be always kept alive. It will often be exercised when wrong, but better so than not to be exercised at all. I like a little rebellion now and then.” To quote George Bush, “Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists.” I am deservedly a little scared, as you also should be.

2 . Your politicians are criminals. One of the early tenets of the United States of America was “no taxation without representation.” Politicians accept huge wads of cash from corporations and interest groups to pass laws which benefit only the top few men (and a couple of women) in industry. Sometimes they store this cash in their freezer. Sometimes they have the corporations make a “donation” to their private charities. Even when you, The People, reach a frenzied consensus your demands are ignored, but only because you didn’t bring a suitcase full of Benjamins.

1. Because you’re supposed to. The United States was born of rebellion and maintains that its citizens cannot be disarmed. You are a nation of checks and balances, one of which contains the dual assertion that The People are armed and that poppycockery should not be tolerated. The founding fathers wanted you to use your voices to keep your government from becoming corrupt and unconstitutional, but left you a loophole in case they managed to seize power regardless. Loophole, meet the present; The present, allow me to introduce the 2nd Amendment.

*Note to the FBI: The preceding column was written purely as satire, and is not in any way suggesting that I am “with the terrorists.” I love the USA! Go USA! USA! USA! USA!
.

read more | digg story

Friday, December 14, 2007

Immigration Controls and the Police State

One of the things that fascinate me about the immigration debate is those people who say that they favor closed borders but simultaneously oppose the police-state programs that are necessary to enforce such a policy.

read more | digg story

Ron Paul on Mad Money

Finally, somebody in the media is smart enough to question the Federal Reserve.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Meet-Up Groups: Giuliani v Clinton v Huckabee v Obama v Paul

The Soviet-Style Attack on NORFED

by Jacob G. Hornberger, November 21, 2007

It would be difficult to find a better example of federal heavy-handedness than the recent six-hour federal raid on NORFED, the National Organization for the Repeal of the Federal Reserve and Internal Revenue Code. In fact, it would be virtually impossible to distinguish the NORFED raid from similar raids conducted by Soviet and Chinese communist officials against private businesses operating in those countries.

After all, by confiscating all the assets of the company, including its coins, computers, records, and equipment, the feds have totally shut down the NORFED operation. But where is the court order authorizing them to shut down this privately owned business? The answer: There is no such court order. All federal agents had was a search warrant issued by a federal magistrate.

Here’s what the feds did that enabled them to engage in their Soviet-style attack on NORFED. Unlike the system that existed in the Soviet Union and that still exists in Communist China, the U.S. government is precluded by law from simply closing down businesses it doesn’t like or that it is feels are violating the law. If the government wishes to have a business shut down, the law provides a remedy called an injunction, which is a formal order issued by a judge that requires a person or business to cease and desist from engaging in a certain operation.

In order to secure a federal injunction, the petitioner files an application for the injunction with a federal district judge. The judge sets a date for the hearing on the application and gives notice to the respondent of the application and the hearing. What is significant about the hearing on the temporary injunction is that the respondent has the right to be present to defend his side of things. He can have his lawyer present, cross-examine witnesses, present witnesses, introduce evidence, file motions and briefs, and make legal arguments to the judge.

At the conclusion of the temporary-injunction hearing, the judge can either grant or deny the request for a temporary injunction. If he grants it, he sets a bond as a prerequisite to the issuance of the injunction, in order to protect the respondent from damages suffered if it later turns out that the injunction was wrongfully issued. The respondent has the right to appeal the grant of the injunction to the federal court of appeals, which ordinarily grants priority to such cases because of their importance and urgency. Unless the court of appeals vacates the temporary injunction, it remains in effect until a trial on the merits is later held, which may be a trial by jury. At that time, it is determined whether to make the temporary injunction permanent.

What makes the injunction process fair and just is that it permits both sides to be heard. It also protects the respondent by requiring the petitioner to file a bond in an amount intended to compensate him for damages suffered during the pendency of the injunction, including claims filed by irate customers. (Among the assets the feds seized were coins that had been purchased and paid for by NORFED’s customers.)

So, did the FBI and Justice Department employ the injunction process to close down the NORFED operation? Did they ask a judge for a temporary injunction to shut down the operation? Did a federal judge enter an order enjoining NORFED from continuing to operate its business?

The answer is “No” to all of those questions. Instead, what the feds did was engage in a sneaky, back-handed, perhaps even fraudulent, trick of using a search warrant to accomplish the same thing that an injunction accomplishes, but without the procedural due-process protections provided by the injunction process.

A search warrant and an injunction involve two completely different procedures, and each serves a distinct function. For one thing, a search warrant is used in criminal cases while injunctions are used in civil proceedings. The search warrant is used when law-enforcement officers suspect that there is evidence of criminal activity inside a particular location. An officer will appear before a federal magistrate, which is a position lower than a federal district judge, and ask for permission to search the particular locale. In support of the application for a search warrant, the officer must file an affidavit (i.e., a statement under oath) describing with specificity the evidence, the suspected crime, and why he believes the evidence is located in that place.

For example, suppose the cops receive information that a gun used in a murder is located inside a person’s home. They are not permitted to simply drive up to the home, enter it, and begin searching. Instead, they must apply for a warrant. If the warrant is issued, they go to the home, enter it, and search for the weapon. If they find it, they can seize it as evidence.

That’s the purpose of a search warrant — to seek evidence in a criminal case, not to shut down a person’s privately run business. After all, it’s not as if selling coins is akin to selling drugs — just ask the Franklin Mint or any coin dealer.

When the FBI went to the magistrate in the NORFED case, its affidavit alleged that NORFED was engaged in illegal activity, primarily violating the government’s monopoly over the issuance of money.

One problem, however, is that NORFED denies that it has broken the law in any respect. It contends that the issuance of its coins is not illegal, a position that is at least inferentially substantiated by the fact that the feds have taken no action to seek injunctive relief for the several years that NORFED has been in business, not even in the context of a federal lawsuit that NORFED has filed seeking a declaration that its activities are legal, a suit that is still pending in federal district court. Indeed, while the feds have known of NORFED’s operation for years and have even had agents secretly infiltrate the organization, they have never secured a criminal indictment against the operation.

Moreover, even if the government is correct in its allegation that NORFED is violating the government’s money monopoly, as an American business NORFED nonetheless has the right to argue and show that the government’s money monopoly is unconstitutional. While NORFED would have had the opportunity of presenting its constitutional arguments in a temporary injunction hearing, the government’s Soviet-style search-warrant ruse prevented NORFED from doing so prior to its business being shut down and its assets confiscated and carted away.

Did the FBI and the Justice Department have sufficient time and opportunity to seek injunctive relief instead of using the sneaky search-warrant procedure that enabled them to mount their Soviet-like raid? Absolutely. For one thing, federal judges are a dime a dozen in Washington, D.C. The feds could have sought an injunction from any of them, including the federal judge who is presiding in the pending litigation between NORFED and the feds. That of course would have permitted NORFED to be heard and to present its case before a federal district judge, something that the FBI and the Justice Department obviously feared or abhorred. At such a hearing the government would have had the burden of proving that NORFED had truly been violating some federal law with its coin business. NORFED, for its part would have had the opportunity of showing the contrary or of showing that such a law is unconstitutional. But who needs some stinking injunction before a federal judge, where the victim has notice and the opportunity to be heard, when one can simply use the sneaky device of a criminal search warrant to shut down someone’s private business, Soviet-style?

Consider a comparable example. Suppose someone opens a postal delivery business to compete against the U.S. Postal Service in the delivery of first-class mail. Can the FBI legally send its gendarmes out and conduct a Soviet-style raid on the business, as it has done with NORFED? No. Instead, the government must go to federal court and secure an injunction requiring the privately owned business to cease and desist its competitive ways. In fact, that is exactly what happens whenever someone has the audacity to compete against the U.S. Postal Service in the delivery of first-class mail.

But here we have the feds using Soviet-style tactics to raid and shut down a privately owned business without providing the victim advance notice or opportunity to be heard. Even worse, in order to deceptively preserve the appearance of legal process to cover up its Soviet-like behavior, government officials abuse the criminal process, perhaps even with the fraudulent failure to disclose their real intentions to the federal magistrate who issued the search warrant.

In a civilized country based on the rule of law, people cannot have their lives, liberty, and property taken away from them without notice, hearing, opportunity to be heard, and other fundamental aspects of procedural due process. Unfortunately, in the post-9/11 world in which we now live, anything goes as far as federal power is concerned. The heavy-handed, perhaps even fraudulent, Soviet-style attack on NORFED is proof-positive of that.

Jacob Hornberger is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation. Send him email.

Ron Paul will soon take to the sky

Enough with research on the Internet, or watching the political debates on television or listening to sound bites on the radio. In just a few days, Ron Paul supporters will give the eastern half of the United States a new way to campaign: from a blimp.

read more | digg story

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Bush and His Scary (Nonexistent) WMDs in Iran

The CIA and 15 other U.S. spy agencies (yes, 16 in all!) have issued a National Intelligence Estimate reporting that Iran halted its nuclear-weapon program in 2003, contradicting what Bush and Vice President Cheney have been suggesting for the past 4 years.

read more | digg story

Should socialist education be saved or scrapped?

I challenge anyone: Show me a better model of socialism than public schooling and use any country you want, including China, North Korea, Cuba, and the former Soviet Union. You’ll have a hard time meeting the challenge. Now, ask yourself: Is it possible that socialism can be made to succeed?

read more | digg story

Cop Mistakes Gun For Taser; Kills man, No Charges Filed

The officer got the order to "electrocute" but thought she heard "execute" so she blasted a handcuffed man in custody, instead of just tasering him. No charges were filed for this "honest mistake."

read more | digg story

Monday, December 03, 2007

The Ron Paul Revolution Movie!

The Ron Paul Revolution is an hour-long introduction to Congressman Ron Paul and his freedom message. Beginning with the amazing grassroots support his candidacy has spontaneously ignited, the video covers his positions on foreign policy, health care, immigration, monetary policy, income taxes, entitlements, civil liberties and more.

The movie is interspersed with clips of Dr. Paul through a twenty-year career in the House of Representatives. Current clips from the 2008 Presidential campaign are virtually interchangeable with past clips, his consistent positions and unwavering defense of the Constitution clearly on display. Ron Paul is not beholden to lobbyists or special interests, he simply does not participate in politics-as-usual.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Des Moines Register openly displays anti- Ron Paul bias.

If you thought the New York Times and Washington Post were bad: Despite the doctor's success in Iowa, he will be excluded from 8 editorials comparing candidates on important issues. It's not hard to figure out why this paper's circulation has dropped to below 150K. Is this a local bias or did the order come down from their Gannett masters?

read more | digg story