Thursday, March 27, 2014

Our Time Is Up

No doubt you've seen the same plethora of "Is America descending into chaos and tyranny?" commentary I've read, these past few years. No doubt you've spun the question about with some reluctance, fearing that the answer might be the...dispreferred one.

We're there, folks. I'm sorry to be the one to have to tell you.

Justice in these United States is looking pretty weak lately:

Bob Harte groggily opened his front door and found a fully-armed Johnson County SWAT team in front of him early in the morning of April 20, 2012.

It was 7:30 a.m. when he'd heard a knock at the door and pulled himself out of bed to answer it while his wife and two kids slept. A SWAT team surrounded his home, and a deputy had a battering ram ready to charge through the door had Bob had not opened it.

The deputies pushed Bob to the floor of the entry way of his home and stood over him with rifles screaming, “Where are the children in the home?” Bob told them they were in their rooms and the deputies ran to find them.

The commotion woke his wife Addie Harte who came downstairs to find out what was going on.

“We just kept saying ‘You’re in the wrong house!’ said Addie.

Deputies searched the sofa and then allowed the family of four to sit on it, in front of their picture window, as armed deputies searched the home. For two hours, the family sat on that sofa, afraid and puzzled as to why deputies were in their home.

“On television, they always come to the door and say ‘we have a search warrant’ and hold it up. Here it is. Let us in. We were told in Kansas, they don't have to give you the search warrant until they leave,” Bob Harte said.

The Hartes’ kept asking deputies why they were in their home but deputies would only say that they were looking for “narcotics.”

At the end of the raid, deputies handed the warrant over to Bob. On it, they had written they hadn’t seized anything. They had not found anything illegal in the home. Bob would end up taking that warrant door to door in their neighborhood to convince his neighbors nothing inappropriate had happened at their home.

Many families would have simply wiped the sweat from their brows and prayed that such an infamy would never recur. The Hartes were determined to find out why they'd been targeted:

After the raid, the couple thought they could access public records to find out why law enforcement suspected drugs were in their home. They told 41 Action News they were shocked to find out they could not access any of those records under Kansas law.

“We were chosen more or less at random for this drug raid and we were like ‘what do you mean we can't get the records? They raided our house,” said Addie.

The Hartes spent $25,000 hiring an attorney to fight to get access to the records. It took a year, but the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office eventually released the records. The Hartes were surprised by what they read.

Records showed on Aug. 9, 2011, a Missouri Highway Patrol trooper observed a man leaving the Green Circle hydroponics store in Kansas City, Mo., in a KIA with his children and a small bag.

Bob said he had been to the store to get supplies for a science project he was working on with his son: a basement hydroponic garden.

Troopers had been observing customers at the hydroponics store because hydroponic supplies are often used in cultivating indoor marijuana plants.

Whatever the police suspected, they didn't consider it terribly first:

The Missouri Highway Patrol didn’t turn over the information to Johnson County authorities until March 20, 2012—seven months after the initial tip was observed. The records contain no information about why MHP waited so long to contact Johnson County law enforcement and no information about what triggered them handing over this information.

Records show Johnson County deputies traced the tag number on the KIA observed by MHP to Bob and Addie Harte. On April 3, 2012, investigators visited the Harte’s home at 5 a.m. They went through the Harte’s trash and found wet plant material. At this time, investigators reported they didn’t know what it was so they failed to test it.

A week later, on April 10th, investigators returned to the home. Again, deputies searched through the trash. This time, when they found plant-like material, they performed a field test which indicated the substance was marijuana.

Deputies went to the home a third time on April 17th, 2012. Again, deputies found plant material in the Harte’s trash. They performed another field test which again indicated a positive result for marijuana.

Was that reason enough for a SWAT-team raid? Prepared to batter down a residential door and enter with guns drawn?

The Hartes say they knew immediately what police had located.

“Bob instantly said, ‘It's your tea!’ because I drink loose tea and those are saturated leaves,” said Addie, who told 41 Action News she often threw the leaves in the kitchen trash.

Though field tests are known to be unreliable, reports obtained from the Johnson County crime lab indicate the deputies did not send any of the samples to the crime lab for confirmation. The records also note that deputies did not intend to, but changed their minds when the Hartes started questioning why deputies raided their home.

When the crime lab processed the evidence, their tests came back negative for marijuana. The results came back in May of 2012. The Johnson County Sheriff’s office had that information months before the Hartes were able to get the records that the material was not marijuana.

The embarrassing misstep for deputies would have remained hidden if the Hartes had not had the means to spend money to gain access to the records.

Their zeal for justice cost the Hartes' $25,000. Whether anything they might ever do could properly repair their reputation with their neighbors, or return them to a sense of safety in their own home, is open to question.

The Omnipotent State has a few "volunteer assistants" with notions of their own about the law. Yesterday, noted economist Tyler Cowen was physically attacked:

Economist, author, and George Mason University professor Tyler Cowen was pepper sprayed in his classroom today by a man trying to place him under citizen's arrest. reported on the incident, which took place at GMU's Arlington, Virginia, campus this afternoon.

Police say the man entered the classroom and attempted to place the professor under a citizen’s arrest. The professor tried to get the man—described as a white male in his 20s or 30s—to leave, at which time the man pepper sprayed him and a scuffle ensued, according to Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.

The professor did not know the man, Sternbeck said.

The account didn't identify the professor, but several commenters said it was Cowen.

Tom Roussey, a reporter with D.C.'s ABC7 news, then confirmed with GMU that it was Cowen who was pepper sprayed.

Cowen is a free-market-oriented economist with a considerable presence on the World Wide Web. Draw your own conclusions.

Did you really think the Democrats want to confiscate your guns for your safety's sake?

State Sen. Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) was charged Wednesday with conspiring to commit wire fraud and traffic firearms, part of a sweeping public corruption case outlined by federal prosecutors.

The charges sent shock waves through the San Francisco and Sacramento political establishments, as FBI agents searched Yee's Capitol office. Last year the FBI raided the offices of Sen. Ron Calderon (D-Montebello), who was targeted in a bribery sting.

In all, 26 people, including former school board president Keith Jackson, were indicted on charges related to an extensive crime ring headed by well-known Chinatown figure Raymond Chow, who was also arrested and charged Wednesday.

The indictment alleges Yee and Jackson defrauded "citizens of honest services" and were involved in a scheme to traffic firearms in exchange for thousands in campaign donations to the senator.

Federal prosecutors also allege Yee agreed to perform official acts in exchange for the money, including one instance in which he introduced a businessman to state legislators who had significant influence over pending medical marijuana legislation. In exchange, the businessman -- who was actually an undercover FBI agent -- agreed to donate thousands to Yee's campaign fund, according to the indictment.

The indictment also describes an August 2013 exchange in which Jackson told an undercover officer that Yee had an arms-trafficking contact. Jackson allegedly said Yee could facilitate a meeting for a donation.

Chow, who has been connected over the years to the criminal gang Wo Hop To and is known as "Shrimp Boy," was indicted for money laundering, conspiracy to receive and transport stolen property, and conspiracy to traffic contraband cigarettes.

The redoubtable Glenn Reynolds comments thus:

If a politician’s for gun control, it doesn’t prove he’s a crook. But it’s the way to bet.

Heh. Indeed.

The news isn't all bad, of course. Remember all those organizations the Southern Poverty Law Center and Anti-Defamation League castigated as "hate groups?"

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which has labeled several Washington, D.C.-based family organizations as "hate groups" for favoring traditional marriage, has been dumped as a "resource" on the FBI's Hate Crime Web page, a significant rejection of the influential legal group.

The Web page scrubbing, which also included eliminating the Anti-Defamation League, was not announced and came in the last month after 15 family groups pressed Attorney General Eric Holder and FBI Director James Comey to stop endorsing a group -- SPLC -- that inspired a recent case of domestic terrorism at the Family Research Council.

Now and then, even the FBI gets one right. But far too much damage has been done already.

The party that holds the White House and Senate is afflicted by rampant criminality:

“Think of the Democratic Party as what it really is: a criminal organization masquerading as a political party,” my friend and fellow PJM columnist Michael Walsh wrote in 2009 in the guise of his leftwing alter-ego, David Kahane.

Certainly, at a minimum it’s safe to say that Democrats were rather active on the nation’s police blotters today. Since this is one narrative the MSM will never assemble (as they’re in on the fun), it’s up to the Blogosphere.

PJ Media pillar Ed Driscoll's round-up is too good to miss. Please read it all.

Don't think for a moment that the criminality of "our" governments is limited to a few non-representative cases. Nice Deb provides a horrifying round-up today. Please read it all. Then have a gander at just who "our" governments have decided to enlist as assistants in the cause of justice:

Union representatives from the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) are now accompanying federal government safety inspectors on site visits to review labor complaints at nonunion private businesses, The Daily Caller has learned.

SEIU and other labor unions can accompany the government inspectors on site visits due to a quiet and contested Obama administration rule clarification issued last year in response to a request from a union representative.

SEIU agents recently accompanied an inspector from the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), a division of the Department of Labor, on three visits to nonunion work sites under contract with the Houston-based janitorial company Professional Janitorial Services (PJS).

The SEIU representatives gained entry alongside an OSHA inspector to a private office building cleaned by PJS in West Houston on October 29, 2013.

SEIU representatives also accompanied an OSHA inspector on visits to office buildings cleaned by PJS in Houston on October 29, 2013, and in Southwest Houston on November 7, 2013, but the union agents were denied access by the building owners each time.

There is no identifiable force in these United States more openly thuggish and ready to use violence to gain its ends than America's labor unions. Excepting "our" governments, of course.

I really do hate to be the one to tell you, Gentle Reader, but, as my favorite fictional protagonist once said, we're in the deepest of deep shit and sinking fast. Liberty and justice are no longer reliable conditions of American life, even de facto.

Each and every American lives under the threat of the sort of random oppression the Hartes experienced. Anyone of a conservative or libertarian inclination who dares to make his views public is vulnerable to the sort of assault Tyler Cowen experienced. Ordinary passers-by on public streets must go in fear of "knockout game" gangs, about which the police seem disinclined to concern themselves. Businesses of any size that don't kowtow to unions are constantly watchful for "union representatives," who are protected from prosecution under federal law for anything they might do "in furtherance of union objectives." The IRS seeks the power to discriminate among advocacy groups on the basis of their political stances, while its top man has defied Congress's demand for the evidence that it's already done so. The EPA is about to rule that your backyard is a "federally protected wetland," because it's damp for a day or so after a rainstorm. ObamaCare has proved to be a "law" written in water, for whose failure its principal promoter and his co-partisans seek to evade all responsibility. Meanwhile, scores of politicians -- "our representatives," remember? -- are going down on charges that range from bribery to conspiracy to violate the firearms importation laws.

It's impossible not to be put in mind of the late Samuel Francis's concept of anarcho-tyranny:

What we have in this country today, then, is both anarchy (the failure of the state to enforce the laws) and, at the same time, tyranny – the enforcement of laws by the state for oppressive purposes; the criminalization of the law-abiding and innocent through exorbitant taxation, bureaucratic regulation, the invasion of privacy, and the engineering of social institutions, such as the family and local schools; the imposition of thought control through "sensitivity training" and multiculturalist curricula, "hate crime" laws, gun-control laws that punish or disarm otherwise law-abiding citizens but have no impact on violent criminals who get guns illegally, and a vast labyrinth of other measures. In a word, anarcho-tyranny....

The laws that are enforced are either those that extend or entrench the power of the state and its allies and internal elites ... or else they are the laws that directly punish those recalcitrant and "pathological" elements in society who insist on behaving according to traditional norms – people who do not like to pay taxes, wear seat belts, or deliver their children to the mind-bending therapists who run the public schools; or the people who own and keep firearms, display or even wear the Confederate flag, put up Christmas trees, spank their children, and quote the Constitution or the Bible – not to mention dissident political figures who actually run for office and try to do something about mass immigration by Third World populations.

And no, I have no idea what we can do about it, short of an immediate mass armed uprising and the wholesale purging of "our" political class.

"The System" cannot be redeemed by electoral means. Neither can it be corrected through the courts. I leave it to you whether it's time to reach for the ultimate answer to tyrants.


Joseph P. Martino said...

May I put in a recommendation for my book RESISTANCE TO TYRANNY? It's a primer on how to conduct an armed revolt. Available from Amazon as either a hard copy or a Kindle version.

I understand what you're getting at, and I realize I'm already on a list, so nothing I can now saw will make things any worse.

Anonymous said...

I believe Yahweh calls it forebearance.

We are to forebear with our circumstances.

The Second Amendment is the canary in the coal mine.

When they come for our arms (with arms of their own), we will know that the situation is lost.

Then we shall resist with force.

Anonymous said...

"What we have in this country today, then, is both anarchy (the failure of the state to enforce the laws) and, at the same time, tyranny"

While it certainly resembles tyranny, it sure isn't anarchy.

Anarchy means no ruler, therefore no state to enforce (or not)laws. Anarchy precludes the very existence of a state. Words either stand for a definitive idea, or nothing at all. I'm for definitive.


Oldfart said...

Anonymous @1:41, when they come for our guns it will already be too late. Unfortunately, we are "law-abiding," so we will patiently wait until we're shoveling camel dung out of our tents before we do anything.

Francis W. Porretto said...

Don't be tiresome, itor. Didn't you notice that that was a quote?

You should direct your nitpicking to Sam Francis. Oh, wait, he's dead, isn't he? So I'm afraid you're out of luck.

Anonymous said...

@Oldfart. When they come for the guns its hardly too late, just as it wasn't too late when the British marched on Concord. The logistics of collecting all of those weapons - and rounding up the 9 Million or so who will resist even if you knew where they were and where their guns are kept, is beyond the Feds ability to accomplish in a short time with the 2.5 million or so LE and Military they have at their disposal ( and that is assuming 100% follow orders) . Midnight raids aren't going to do it, and when word gets out, anyone in a uniform will be in danger of being killed and their families will be retaliated against. Victory isn't assured, as they could use WMD to simply thin the population to a manageable size, but tanks and drones aren't much use against small bands that snipe and disperse - unless they are willing to accept huge "collateral damage" of their libtard herd

Anonymous said...

Long past time, I think. I believe most are awaiting the "opening kickoff" in Connecticut or New York. Then we will hit all targets of opportunity. I've got a drone base near me in mind.

Robert What? said...

This is what our national tragedy known as the "drug wars" have wrought. They have turned the police from public servants to paramilitary bands at odds with the public. The dirty little secret of the drug wars is that the police and many other levels of government make so much money from other people's misery that they don't want to give it up. Criminal and civil forfeiture in particular have become major sources of revenue. I expect that the police visiting them were hoping to score a free house and cars. Time to declare the Drug Wars over. They benefit only the drug lords and the government. They are a tragedy for everyone else.

Anonymous said...

LE has become the STANDING ARMY the founders feared for the people and the corrupt courts/judges "enable" them with unconstitutional rulings while the people continue to endure the usurpation of their rights, privileges and immunities.

Even the juries of our fellow citizens fail to protect us from their tyranny and lawlessness.

We lost the war during the last 100 years as the public schools reprogrammed our children's minds to think like sheep and to support more and more "government" for the public "good.".