Sep 09

Free-Speech

- Kentucky Man Arrested for “Terroristic Threatening” After Posting Song Lyrics to Facebook (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Sep 8, 2014):

It seems as if the never-ending stream of American plebs being arrested for the most innocuous activities, things that were seen as completely normal just a few years ago, is continuing its irrational march forward toward peak nanny-statism, at which point everything will be criminalized.

This disturbing trend has been a key topic for Liberty Blitzkrieg in 2014. Here are the three most recent absurd cases from July and August alone: Continue reading »

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Jul 02

- Free speech banned: Student group sues 4 US universities that ‘stifle dissent’ (RT, July 2, 2014):

Arguing that free speech is suffering at colleges across the US, an advocacy group filed lawsuits against four universities, seeking to strengthen the rights guaranteed by the Constitution.

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) has filed lawsuits against four schools – Iowa State University, Ohio University, Chicago University and Citrus College in Glendora, California – that it says disrupt the flow of free speech in a number of ways, including the banning of particular T-shirts, for example, or by refusing to permit certain speakers address the student body on controversial issues.

According to the group’s estimate, about 60 percent of public universities and colleges have restrictions on rights guaranteed by the First Amendment. Continue reading »

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Jun 23

FYI.



Added: June 18, 2014

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May 25


May 24, 2014

Description:

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) told attendees at a Family Research Council pastors retreat that Senate Democrats want to limit free speech through amending the Constitution.

“When you think it can’t get any worse, it does,” Cruz said at the FRC’s Watchmen on the Wall 2014 event in Washington, D.C. on Thursday. “This year, I’m sorry to tell you, the United States Senate is going to be voting on a constitutional amendment to repeal the First Amendment.”

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Mar 18

RT - Russia Today

https://www.youtube.com/user/RussiaToday:

Russia Today YouTube channel suspended

Spam? Gaming? Unlikely.

Other Terms of Service violations? Maybe.

It is easy for Google to dig something up if Google really wanted to shut down RT.

Or is it because of ‘misleading content’?

How about RT’s coverage of the Ukraine situation, which is definitely not being in line with western media propaganda?

RT America (another Russia Today channel) is still up.

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Mar 06

- NSA Chief is Pushing for Legislation to Stifle the First Amendment (Liberty Blitzkrieg, March 5, 2014):

“Recently, what came out with the justices in the United Kingdom … they looked at what happened on Miranda and other things, and they said it’s interesting: journalists have no standing when it comes to national security issues. They don’t know how to weigh the fact of what they’re giving out and saying, is it in the nation’s interest to divulge this.”
- General Keith Alexander, Director of the NSA

Although General Alexander states the above with regard to the UK justice system, he clearly agrees with the assessment. Read the passage above again and think about how scary that statement is. It becomes clear that one of the reasons abuses at the NSA are so egregious is because of the attitude of the person in charge. Alexander genuinely thinks that intelligence officials know best, and should not be subject to any sort of accountability. You don’t need to be a card-carrying member of the ACLU to see how dangerous this perspective is. To endorse this notion that “journalists have no standing when it comes to national security issues,” is to effectively make illegal one of the most important free speech rights in any democracy. This sort of attitude represents the antithesis of American values.

Not only does General Alexander see things this way, apparently he is lobbying for Congressional legislation that would solidify this authoritarian view within the law itself.

For example, the Guardian reported yesterday that:

General Keith Alexander, who has furiously denounced the Snowden revelations, said at a Tuesday cybersecurity panel that unspecified “headway” on what he termed “media leaks” was forthcoming in the next several weeks, possibly to include “media leaks legislation.”

Continue reading »

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Feb 20

STASI-USSA1

- The Obama Administration Plans to Embed “Government Researchers” to Monitor Media Organizations (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Feb 20, 2014):

Last week, I highlighted the fact that the latest Press Freedom Index showcased a 13 point plunge in America’s press freedom to an embarrassing #46 position in the global ranking. If the authoritarians in the Obama Administration have their way, this country is set to fall much further in next year’s index.

Incredibly, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is set to roll out something called the Critical Information Needs study, which will embed government “researchers” into media organizations around the nation to make sure they are doing their job properly.

No this isn’t “conspiracy theory.” It is so real, and represents such a threat to the First Amendment, that a current FCC commissioner, Ajit Pai, recently wrote an Op-Ed in the Wall Street Journal, warning Americans of this scheme. He writes: Continue reading »

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Nov 22

“Fascism should rightly be called Corporatism, as it is the merger of corporate and government power.”
- Benito Mussolini

So much for your First Amendment rights!


- US House approves $5,000 fee for official drilling protests, less federal authority over fracking (RT, Nov 22, 2013):

The US House passed Wednesday two bills that would demand a $5,000 filing fee for any individual that wanted to hold an official protest of a drilling project, and that would give the feds less authority nationwide over hydraulic fracking rules.

HR 1965, the Federal Lands Jobs and Energy Security Act, imposes a $5,000 fee for anyone wishing to file for an official protest of a proposed drilling project. An amendment to the bill offered by Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) that would have clarified the fee to make sure it was not in violation of First Amendment rights was defeated.

In addition, the bill would allow for automatic approval of onshore drilling permits should the US Department of Interior (DOI) take over 60 days to act on an application. DOI would also be required to begin commercial leasing for development of oil shale – not to be confused with “shale oil” – which is rock that must be heated to about 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit to yield crude oil.

Continue reading »

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Oct 17


Painting by Anthony Freda: www.AnthonyFreda.com

- Americans Have Lost VIRTUALLY ALL of Our Constitutional Rights (ZeroHedge, Oct 17, 2013):

This post explains the liberties guaranteed in the Bill of Rights – the first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution – and provides a scorecard on the extent of the loss of each right.  (This is an updated version of an essay we wrote in February.  Unfortunately, a lot of information has come out since then.)

First Amendment

The 1st Amendment protects speech, religion, assembly and the press: Continue reading »

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Aug 09

- Snowden’s Email Service Provider Shuts Down Following Government Pressure (ZeroHedge, Aug 8, 2013):

Secure and free web-based email service provider Lavabit shut down today. What makes Lavabit different from countless other email providers who have shuttered over the years is that according to BoingBoing, Lavabit is the email service supposedly used by Edward Snowden. Which would explain the nebulous tone in the farewell letter posted on the company’s front page by owner Ladar Levison. It also explains why Lavabit was shut down by the US government, although that was mostly inferred from the letter which due to legal limitations does not expound on the official reasons for the shut down – one can imagine. It certainly explains the following punchline in Levison’s letter: “This experience has taught me one very important lesson: without congressional action or a strong judicial precedent, I would _strongly_ recommend against anyone trusting their private data to a company with physical ties to the United States.“We wholeheartedly agree.

Lavabit’s farewell letter:

My Fellow Users,

I have been forced to make a difficult decision: to become complicit in crimes against the American people or walk away from nearly ten years of hard work by shutting down Lavabit. After significant soul searching, I have decided to suspend operations. I wish that I could legally share with you the events that led to my decision. I cannot. I feel you deserve to know what’s going on–the first amendment is supposed to guarantee me the freedom to speak out in situations like this. Unfortunately, Congress has passed laws that say otherwise. As things currently stand, I cannot share my experiences over the last six weeks, even though I have twice made the appropriate requests.

Continue reading »

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Jul 02

- In Tennessee Complaining About Water Quality = Terrorism (Liberty Blitzkrieg, July 2, 2013):

This is a little over a week old, but I hadn’t seen it and it’s so bothersome that everyone needs to be made aware.  One of my major themes this year has been the sudden outburst of cases in which mostly young people face extremely long prison sentences for merely exercising free speech. The way that many of these charges are justified is through new sets of “anti-terrorism” laws that have been set up in municipalities across the country, and allow for harsh sentences for minor offenses.  Of course, this is merely a backdoor way to erode the First Amendment in the name of fighting the never-ending “war on terror.” A war that is supposedly against Al-Qaeda, the same folks we are actively arming in Syria.

Now from the Tennessean:

A Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation deputy director warned a group of Maury County residents that unfounded complaints about water quality could be considered an “act of terrorism.”

“We take water quality very seriously. Very, very seriously,” said Sherwin Smith, deputy director of TDEC’s Division of Water Resources, according to audio recorded by attendees. “But you need to make sure that when you make water quality complaints you have a basis, because federally, if there’s no water quality issues, that can be considered under Homeland Security an act of terrorism.”

Continue reading »

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Jun 15


Thomas Drake, NSA whistleblower, in a still from the Robert Greenwald documentary War on Whistleblowers. Photograph: guardian.co.uk

- Snowden saw what I saw: surveillance criminally subverting the constitution (Guardian, June 12, 2013, by Thomas Drake):

What Edward Snowden has done is an amazingly brave and courageous act of civil disobedience.

Like me, he became discomforted by what he was exposed to and what he saw: the industrial-scale systematic surveillance that is scooping up vast amounts of information not only around the world but in the United States, in direct violation of the fourth amendment of the US constitution.

The NSA programs that Snowden has revealed are nothing new: they date back to the days and weeks after 9/11. I had direct exposure to similar programs, such as Stellar Wind, in 2001. In the first week of October, I had an extraordinary conversation with NSA’s lead attorney. When I pressed hard about the unconstitutionality of Stellar Wind, he said:

“The White House has approved the program; it’s all legal. NSA is the executive agent.”

It was made clear to me that the original intent of government was to gain access to all the information it could without regard for constitutional safeguards. “You don’t understand,” I was told. “We just need the data.”

In the first week of October 2001, President Bush had signed an extraordinary order authorizing blanket dragnet electronic surveillance: Stellar Wind was a highly secret program that, without warrant or any approval from the Fisa court, gave the NSA access to all phone records from the major telephone companies, including US-to-US calls. It correlates precisely with the Verizon order revealed by Snowden; and based on what we know, you have to assume that there are standing orders for the other major telephone companies. Continue reading »

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Jun 15

- Al Gore denounces NSA’s surveillance program as ‎unlawful (PressTV, June 15, 2013):

Former US Vice-President Al Gore has sharply criticized the National Security Agency (NSA)’s secret telephone data collection program, saying it is against the country’s Constitution.

“This in my view violates the Constitution. The fourth amendment and the first amendment – and the fourth amendment language is crystal clear,” he told the British daily The Guardian on Friday.

Gore said the argument that the NSA surveillance had operated within the boundaries of the law has failed to convince him, adding, “It is not acceptable to have a secret interpretation of a law that goes far beyond any reasonable reading of either the law or the Constitution and then classify as top secret what the actual law is.”

Continue reading »

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Apr 30

- Political Activists May be Banned from San Francisco’s Public Transportation System (Liberty Blitzkrieg, April 30, 2013):

This article seems innocuous enough…until you keep reading.  At first it appears entirely reasonable that the BART system (Bay Area Rapid Transit) might look to ban riders for a year who act violently while using the service. However; as is becoming increasingly typical these days, what sounds reasonable at first tends to be awful upon deeper inspection.

For example, according to ABC News in San Francisco:

AB 716 won’t only target violent behavior. It can be applied to protestors who have been arrested during free-speech movements.

Continue reading »

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Mar 25

- El Pais Retracts Article Alleging “Merkel, Like Hitler, Has Declared War On Europe” (ZeroHedge, March 24, 2013):

What does it take for the Spanish “first amendment” journalistic override to kick in? Apparently, in the case of local media leader El Pais, putting up the following in print: “Merkel, como Hitler, ha declarado la guerra al resto del continente, ahora para garantizarse su espacio vital económico.” For the Spanish-challeneged this translates as follows: “Merkel, like Hitler, has declared war on the rest of the continent now to secure their economic living space.” Ah yes, the touchy verboten topic of German “Lebensraum” – its invocation, and ostensibly the unflattering Merkel comparison (seen so often in Greece) were enough to get the article by Juan Torres López in the Andalusia version of El Pais titled simply enough “Alemania contra Europa” taken down.Is it perhaps because unlike in Greece, where articles like that are a daily occurrence, Spaniards still have something to lose should they also lose the good graces of the German chancellor? Something that is more than one Spiderman towel per depositor in the nation’s just as insolvent banking system, where apparently unlike in Cyprus, the ESM actually does work to preserve liquidity and stability?…

A cached version of the article:

In its place one only now sees the following: Continue reading »

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Feb 22


Painting by Anthony Freda: www.AnthonyFreda.com

- Scorecard: How Many Rights Have Americans REALLY Lost? (Washington’s Blog, Feb 21, 2013):

How Many Constitutional Freedoms Do We Still Have?

Preface: While a lot of people talk about the loss of our Constitutional liberties, people usually speak in a vague, generalized manner … or focus on only one issue and ignore the rest.

This post explains the liberties guaranteed in the Bill of Rights – the first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution – and provides a scorecard on the extent of the loss of each right. Continue reading »

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Jan 22

- Rapper Lupe Fiasco Booted Off Inaugural Party Stage After Criticizing Obama (NPR, Jan 21, 2013):

The rapper Lupe Fiasco was escorted off the stage at an unofficial inaugural ball in Washington, last night.

As Politico reports, the Grammy-nominated rapper stayed on the anti-war song “Words I Never Said” for 30 minutes. Video posted by Now This News shows Fiasco dropping lines critical of President Obama, before the lights go off and men in black suits escort him off the stage.

“Limbaugh is a racist, Glenn Beck is a racist,” he raps. “Gaza Strip was getting bombed, Obama didn’t say SHIT”. That’s why I ain’t vote for him, next one either. I’m a part of the problem; my problem is I’m peaceful.

Continue reading »

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Nov 28


YouTube Added: 27.11.2012

Description:

Ashley Jessica and Jason Bermas visit Albany International on Black Friday to educate people about opting out of dangerous body scanners and filming intrusive pat downs.

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Nov 28

- Supreme Court rules cops can be filmed (RT, Nov 27, 2012):

Smile for the camera, coppers — the US Supreme Court has decided to let stand a lesser ruling that allows citizens in the state of Illinois to record police officers performing their official duties.

Up until just last year, an anti-eavesdropping legislation on the books across Illinois meant any person within the state could be imprisoned for as much as 15 years for recording a police officer without expressed consent. In August 2011, a federal appeals court struck down the law, but an Illinois prosecutor has asked the Supreme Court — unsuccessfully — to challenge that ruling.

On Monday, the top justices in the US said that they would not hear the case and will instead rely on last year’s ruling where a federal appeals court in Chicago agreed that the eavesdropping law, as written, “likely violates” the First Amendment.

Continue reading »

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Sep 18

- US Totalitarian State Wins After All: Obama Reinstates NDAA Military Detention Provision (ZeroHedge, Sep 18, 2012):

Just over a week ago, we wrote of the challenge to Obama’s NDAA totalitarian bill. Hope remained that Chris Hedges’ view of the indefinite detention as “unforgivable, unconstitutional, and exceedingly dangerous” would bolster judgment. However, as Russia Today reports, a lone appeals judge bowed down to the Obama administration late Monday and reauthorized the White House’s ability to indefinitely detain American citizens without charge or due process. On Monday, the US Justice Department asked for an emergency stay on the previous Chris Hedges’-driven order, and hours later US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit Judge Raymond Lohier agreed to intervene and place a hold on the injunction. The stay will remain in effect until at least September 28, when a three-judge appeals court panel is expected to begin addressing the issue. It would appear the total fascist takeover of Amerika is drawing nearer by the day.

Some background:

What is ironic, is that in the ongoing absolute farce that is the theatrical presidential debate, there hasn’t been one word uttered discussing precisely the kind of creeping totalitarian control, and Orwellian loss of constitutional rights, that the biparty-supported NDAA would have demanded out of the US republic. Why? Chris Hedges said it best:

The oddest part of this legislation is that the FBI, the CIA, the director of national intelligence, the Pentagon and the attorney general didn’t support it. FBI Director Robert Mueller said he feared the bill would actually impede the bureau’s ability to investigate terrorism because it would be harder to win cooperation from suspects held by the military. “The possibility looms that we will lose opportunities to obtain cooperation from the persons in the past that we’ve been fairly successful in gaining,” he told Congress.

But it passed anyway. And I suspect it passed because the corporations, seeing the unrest in the streets, knowing that things are about to get much worse, worrying that the Occupy movement will expand, do not trust the police to protect them. They want to be able to call in the Army. And now they can.

Via RT, Obama wins right to indefinitely detain Americans under NDAA:

A lone appeals judge bowed down to the Obama administration late Monday and reauthorized the White House’s ability to indefinitely detain American citizens without charge or due process.

Continue reading »

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Sep 13

Must-see:

- Pulitzer Prize Journalist Chris Hedges Warns of Physical Roundups Under Obama (Video)


- US Totalitarianism Loses Major Battle As Judge Permanently Blocks NDAA’s Military Detention Provision (ZeroHedge, Sep 12, 2012):

Back in January, Pulitzer winning journalist Chris Hedges sued President Obama and the recently passed National Defense Authorization Act, specifically challenging the legality of the Authorization for Use of Military Force or, the provision that authorizes military detention for people deemed to have “substantially supported” al Qaeda, the Taliban or “associated forces.” Hedges called the president’s action allowing indefinite detention, which was signed into law with little opposition from either party “unforgivable, unconstitutional and exceedingly dangerous.” He attacked point blank the civil rights farce that is the neverending “war on terror” conducted by both parties, targetting whom exactly is unclear, but certainly attaining ever more intense retaliation from foreigners such as the furious attacks against the US consulates in Egypt and Libya. He asked  “why do U.S. citizens now need to be specifically singled out for military detention and denial of due process when under the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force the president can apparently find the legal cover to serve as judge, jury and executioner to assassinate U.S. citizens.” A few months later, in May, U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest ruled in favor of a temporary injunction blocking the enforcement of the authorization for military detention. Today, the war againt the true totalitarian terror won a decisive battle, when in a 112-opinion, Judge Forrest turned the temporary injunction, following an appeal by the totalitarian government from August 6, into a permanent one.

From Reuters:

The permanent injunction prevents the U.S. government from enforcing a portion of Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act’s “Homeland Battlefield” provisions.

Continue reading »

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Apr 27

And by the way:

The Gerson Therapy cures diabetes II within 7 to 14 days. And that is not an advice. It’s a fact!


Health blogger threatened with jail time for advocating Paleo diet that cured his diabetes (Natural News, April 26, 2012):

Internet free speech is under assault in America, and a dangerous new trend has surfaced that threatens to throw nutritional bloggers in jail for advocating healthy diets on their blogs or websites. As you read this, a blogger who wrote about using the Paleo diet to overcome diabetes is being threatened with jail time in North Carolina, where the state Board of Dietetics / Nutrition claims his nutritional advocacy is equivalent to the crime of “practicing nutrition without a license.”

His name is Steve Cooksey, and his website is http://www.diabetes-warrior.net

He’s being targeted by state “dieticians” (which is another word for “nutritional moron” as you’ll see below) who say that Chapter 90, Article 25 of the North Carolina General Statutes makes it a misdemeanor to “practice dietetics or nutrition.” His website’s advocating of the Paleo diet for individuals who have health challenges is, they claim, a violation of law.

So they’ve threatened him with arrest if he does not take down his website… or at the very least stop advocating the Paleo diet to readers.

Criminalizing health advice

Continue reading »

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Apr 23

- SOPA mutates into much worse CISPA, the latest threat to internet free speech (Natural News, April 21, 2012)

Just because SOPA and PIPA, the infamous internet “kill switch” bills, are largely dead does not mean the threat to internet free speech has become any less serious. The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), also known as H.R. 3523, is the latest mutation of these internet censorship and spying bills to hit the U.S. Congress — and unless the American people speak up now to stop it, CISPA could lead to far worse repercussions for online free speech than SOPA or PIPA ever would have.

CNET, the popular technology news website that was among many others who spoke up against SOPA and PIPA earlier in the year, is also one of many now sounding the alarm about CISPA, which was authored by Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) and Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.). Though the bill’s promoters are marketing it as being nothing like SOPA or PIPA, CISPA is exactly like those bills, except worse.

Continue reading »

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Apr 21

- Pelosi: Amend the First Amendment (CNSNews, April 19, 2012 ):

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on Thursday endorsed a movement announced by other congressional Democrats on Wednesday to ratify an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would allow Congress to regulate political speech when it is engaged in by corporations as opposed to individuals.

The First Amendment says in part: “Congress shall make no law … abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press…”

Television and radio networks, newspapers, publishing houses, movie studios and think tanks, as well as political action committees, are usually organized as, or elements of, corporations.

Pelosi said the Democrats’ effort to amend the Constitution is part of a three-pronged strategy that also includes promoting the DISCLOSE Act, which would increase disclosure requirements for organizations running political ads, and “reducing the role of money in campaigns” (which some Democrats have said can be done through taxpayer funding of campaigns).

Continue reading »

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Apr 13

- US ‘waging war’ on whistleblowers (RT, April 11, 2012):

The American government “is using its power to intimidate, prosecute and prevent government employees from sharing information about state officials’ misconduct”, insists Stephen Kohn, attorney and author of The Whistleblower’s Handbook.

­This attack on whistleblowers in America is an attack on fundamental freedom of speech, “preventing the American people from learning about the abuses of their government,” warned the attorney.

“The doctrine of the state secret privilege in the US puts a censorship veil over everything you want to blow a whistle on.”

Former CIA Officer John Kiriakou, who was the first official to confirm the waterboarding of terrorist suspects, has been indicted for repeatedly disclosing sensitive information to journalists.

The same law was also used against whistleblower Bradley Manning, the army private who handed secret documents to Wikileaks.

Both cases go against the very basics of the US constitution, says Stephen Kohn.

“The First Amendment was enacted to prevent precisely what we’re seen unfolding today. People in the government witness abuses and they have a right to blow the whistle on them,” Kohn points out. “We are challenging the legal predicates that they have used to prosecute and suppress throughout this country. We are challenging them because they are illegal and unconstitutional,” he said.

“It is government misconduct that the government wants to suppress the public ever learning about. It is the heart of the First Amendment,” Kohn continued, explaining that “the core of the First Amendment is the protection of the people who want to expose the misconduct of government.”

Continue reading »

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Apr 13


YouTube

Description:

President Obama signed bill H.R. 347 (also known as the Federal Restricted Buildings and Grounds Improvement Act of 2011) into law on March 9th, amid numerous protests from the Occupy movement, as well as other agencies. HR 347 is a modification from Senate bill S. 1794, which restricted people from entering or blocking public areas that have been closed off by Secret Service while a person under their protection is passing through. The law also included major public events, such as the Inaguration and Presidential campaigns.

Continue reading »

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Apr 09

Next train ‘Ausschwitz’:

- No.1 Trend Forecaster Gerald Celente: The Entire Financial System Is Collapsing! – This Is FASCISM! (Video, March 26, 2012 )

Flashback:

- Former governor  Jesse Ventura Conspiracy Theory: Police State (And FEMA Concentration Camps) – Full Length Video

The videos down below are a MUST-SEE!


- America: A Government Out Of Control (ZeroHedge, April 8, 2012):

“A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have”
- Thomas Jefferson

Something odd and not quite as planned happened as America grew from its “City on a Hill” origins, on its way to becoming the world’s superpower: government grew. A lot. In fact, the government, which by definition does not create any wealth but merely reallocates it based on the whims of a select few, has transformed from a virtually invisible bystander in the economy, to the largest single employer, and a spending behemoth whose annual cash needs alone are nearly $4 trillion a year, and where tax revenues no longer cover even half the outflows. One can debate why this happened until one is blue in the face: the allures of encroaching central planning, the law of large numbers, and the corollary of corruption, inefficiency and greed, cheap credit, the transition to a welfare nanny state as America’s population grew older, sicker and lazier, you name it. The reality is that the reasons for government’s growth do not matter as much as realizing where we are, and deciding what has to be done: will America’s central planners be afforded ever more power to decide the fates of not only America’s population, but that of the world, or will the people reclaim the ideals that the founders of this once great country had when they set off on an experiment, which is now failing with every passing year?

As the following video created by New America Now, using content by Brandon Smith whose work has been featured extensively on the pages of Zero Hedge, notes, “we tend to view government as an inevitability of life, but the fact is government is not a force of nature. It is an imperfect creation of man and it can be dismantled by man just as easily as it can be established.” Unfortunately, the realization that absolute power corrupts absolutely, and absolute central planning leads to epic catastrophes without fail, seems a long way away: most seem content with their lot in life, with lies that their welfare money is safe, even as the future is plundered with greater fury and aggression every passing year, until one day the ability to transfer wealth (benefiting primarily the uber rich, to the detriment of the middle class which is pillaged on an hourly basis), from the future to the present is gone, manifesting in either a failed bond auction or hyperinflation. The timing or shape of the transition itself is irrelevant, what is certain is that America is now on collision course with certain collapse unless something changes. And one of the things that has to change for hope in the great American dream to be restored, is the role, composition and motivations of government, all of which have mutated to far beyond what anyone envisioned back in 1776. Because America is now saddled with a Government Out Of Control.

Watch the two clips below to understand just how and why we have gotten to where we are. Also watch it to, as rhetorically asked by the narrator, prompt us to question whether the government we now have is still useful to us and what kind of powers it should be allowed to wield.


YouTube


YouTube

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Apr 08


YouTube Added: 03.04.2012

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Apr 04

Oh, sure!

See also:

- Arizona Passes State Bill That Would ‘Censor Any Offensive’ Remarks On The Internet


- Sponsor: Arizona bill isn’t aimed at Internet trolls (CNN, April 4, 2012):

Bloggers this week pounced on an Arizona cyberbullying bill, comparing the legislation to online censorship efforts in Syria and China and saying that lawmakers in the state fundamentally don’t understand the Internet.

“Trolling could get you 25 years in jail in Arizona,” declared a headline on Gizmodo.

The fear is that the bill would prohibit hateful comments on news and social-media sites, amounting to a ban on so-called Internet trolling.

The problem: The bill won’t do any of that, its sponsor told CNN on Wednesday.

“I think they’re absolutely mistaken,” Arizona Rep. Ted Vogt said of bloggers and civil liberties groups that said the bill would censor the Internet. “They clearly haven’t read the bill. This law targets a course of conduct where an individual is harassing, threatening or annoying a specific (person).”

Here’s the paragraph in the bill that got everyone riled up:

“It is unlawful for any person, with intent to terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy or offend, to use any electronic or digital device and use any obscene, lewd or profane language or suggest any lewd or lascivious act, or threaten to inflict physical harm to the person or property of any person. It is also unlawful to otherwise disturb by repeated anonymous electronic or digital communications the peace, quiet or right of privacy of any person at the place where the communications were received.”

Observers said that language was overly broad and could be applied to censor the comments sections of websites and other public digital forums.

Continue reading »

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Apr 04

- Arizona, the Dry County of Free Speech (Technorati, April 4, 2012):

Arizona, Here we go again…

With all the decorum of a bar fight, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer was captured wagging a finger in the face of President Obama last January.  Less than 6 months later we now have the conservative state legislature presenting the Governor with a bill that has the potential to censor Internet speech.

Proposed as an anti-bullying measure added to current stalking legislation, HB 2549 now on the Governor’s desk states…

Section 13-2916, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to  read:

Use of an electronic or digital device to terrify,  intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy or offend;

Opponents of the bill cite a dangerous ambiguity concerning the terms “annoy or offend” which would empower the state to function as a de-facto censor for all forms of communication deemed offensive or annoying.  That includes the Internet with the penalty being a Class 1 Misdemeanor.

It should be noted that the original text of the bill cited “telephone call” as the protected medium but was struck and replaced simply with the terms “Communications” and “Electronic or Digital Device.”  As with SOPA/PIPA this may be another example of government misunderstanding the effect of their legislation on the medium and the First Amendment in general.  If passed Arizona could become a virtual “dry county” for free speech.

The bill’s relatively short length (1.5 pages) fails to define the scope or moderating agency responsible for enforcement which potentially leaves it’s interpretation broad, ambiguous and subjective.  With such a measure signed into law, opposing political and social viewpoints could be curtailed by simply claiming they are offensive or annoying.

Proponents cite the need for broadening the stalking provisions of the current statute to protect individuals online from bullying.

Perhaps the most amusing outcome should the Governor sign the bill into law is the ability to censor the speech of any individual or group deemed offensive or annoying.  That includes the Governor herself as her wagging finger could be deemed offensive.

- Arizona law looks to censor the internet (ABC 4, April 2, 2012):

An Arizona bill being touted as an anti-bullying effort has people across the nation up in arms. The “internet censorship bill” would make it a crime for someone to be “offensive” online. While it has good intentions it’s so broad, online editorials, illustrations, even your Facebook status updates aren’t safe.

- Arizona passes state bill that would ‘censor any offensive’ remarks on the internet (Daily Mail, April 2, 2012):

A bill that passed in the Arizona state legislature could pose a major threat to freedom of speech in the state as it bans anything deemed ‘offensive’ that is published online.

Though it started as an attempt to curb online bullying, opponents see it as a major violation of the First Amendment.

The bill would ‘make unlawful any misuse of electronic or digital devices to terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy, or offend in the course of stalking.’

‘It is unlawful for any person, with intent to terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy or offend, to use any electronic or digital device and use any obscene, lewd or profane language or suggest any lewd or lascivious act, or threaten to inflict physical harm to the person or property of any person.

‘It is also unlawful to otherwise disturb by repeated anonymous electronic or digital communications the peace, quiet or right of privacy of any person at the place where the communications were received.’

The bill, known as House 2549, passed on March 29 and is bound next for the governor’s office.

The New York-based civil liberties activist group called Media Coalition has actively fought against the passage of the bill because, if turned to law, it could criminally prosecute authors of editorials or satirical cartoons that are thought to qualify as offensive.

‘It’s a well-intentioned view and I can see what they have in mind,’ Media Coalition executive director David Horowitz told MailOnline.

‘This is way too broad: it could mean if you’re getting spammed, or annoyed. There’s no requirement that it be repetitive, or that it has to be one-on-one, there’s nothing!’

The group has sent a bevy of letters to Arizona governor Jan Brewer in an attempt to get her to veto the bill before it becomes law.

Though it was initially sponsored by two Republicans in the state legislature, the bill now has bi-partisan support and faced little opposition before it was approved.

Other states have had similar propositions, all of which have come in the form of extensions of existing laws against stalking, but they have not passed.

Bullying and the issues surrounding mean Facebook comments and texts have come up in recent months after a number of young children across the country killed themselves.

‘There’s a genuine concern about harassment and bullying both in person and online, and that is a serious topic, but this bill is just far too broad and has no limitations so it infringes on the freedom of speech,’ Mr Horowitz told MailOnline.

- Arizona’s ‘Annoy Someone, Go to Jail’ Bill in Limbo (AVN News, April 3, 2012):

The bill, which would amend current statutes, levies a Class 1 misdemeanor charge against anyone convicted of the following violations:

It is unlawful for any person, with intent to terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy or offend, to use ANY ELECTRONIC OR DIGITAL DEVICE and use any obscene, lewd or profane language or suggest any lewd or lascivious act, or threaten to inflict physical harm to the person or property of any person. It is also unlawful to otherwise disturb by repeated anonymous ELECTRONIC OR DIGITAL COMMUNICATIONS the peace, quiet or right of privacy of any person at the place where the COMMUNICATIONS were received.

“Naturally, readers of this blog know that I am no fan of using obscene, lewd, or profane language with intent to annoy or offend people,” wrote Volokh. “But, given the First Amendment, the government may not restrict such speech on blogs, e-mail discussion lists, and newspaper Web sites. If the Arizona Legislature wants to apply the [existing] ban on telephone harassment to other one-to-one devices, such as text messaging or e-mails sent directly to a recipient, it may well be free to do so. But the just-passed bill has no such limitation, and thus poses the danger of restricting a great deal of speech that is protected by the First Amendment.”

- Arizona law would censor the Internet (MSNBC, April 2, 2012):

The state of Arizona could find itself in the company of countries like China and Syria for censoring the Internet if the state’s governor signs a bill recently passed by the legislature.

Arizona House Bill 2549, which is now on Gov. Jan Brewer’s desk for signature, was created to counter bullying and stalking. The law would make it a crime to use any electronic or digital device to communicate using “obscene, lewd or profane language” or to suggest a lewd or lascivious act, if done with the intent to “terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy or offend.”

First Amendment rights group Media Coalition, which represents the Motion Picture Association of America, the Recording Industry Association of America, the Association of American Publishers and other related groups, says the bill is not only a violation of the First Amendment, but is so far-ranging as to be preposterous.

In a letter to the governor, the coalition said while government can criminalize speech “that rises to the level of harassment, and many states have laws that do so,” Arizona’s legislation:

… takes a law meant to address irritating phone calls and applies it to communication on web sites, blogs, listserves and other Internet communication. H.B. 2549 is not limited to a one to one conversation between two specific people. The communication does not need to be repetitive or even unwanted. There is no requirement that the recipient or subject of the speech actually feel offended, annoyed or scared. Nor does the legislation make clear that the communication must be intended to offend or annoy the reader, the subject or even any specific person.

This bill isn’t the first the legislature has tackled when it comes to regulating what’s said — or seen — electronically. Another, Senate Bill 1219, would let parents see the text messages on the phones of their children, if they’re under the age of 18. That legislation remains in committee.

H.B. 2549 “would apply to the Internet as a whole, thus criminalizing all manner of writing, cartoons, and other protected material the state finds offensive or annoying,” Media Coalition says on its website — at least for now, until what it says is found to be offensive or annoying by those in Arizona.

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