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I just saw this on RoR and watched it and listened. It made me angry.

We are now in a country where one person can bear false witness by spoken words alone against another and, if politics are involved, send law enforcement agencies like the Secret Service, who then has no obligation to release the identify of the accuser to the accused. And arrests can happen and law enforcement files made of a person's thoughts—all because of a false verbal accusation.

The accused apparently has no rights in this case and is merely left alone (or not) at the sole pleasure of the secret police, er... I mean Secret Service.

I hate to say it, but this is the fruit of that damned Patriot Act. This case is disturbing because a disgruntled Obama supporter was able to bring the threat of force to the doorstep of a person for being rude on the telephone. I doubt Obama knows of this kind of abuse, and this makes it even more disturbing. Any low-level bureaucrat can use this power to intimidate people, whether Bush-friendly or otherwise (after all, he wrote the damn Patriot Act), and whether national-security related or otherwise.

I put this in the Stumping section because it is a clear abuse by an Obama supporter. If anyone knows of such an abuse by a McCain supporter, this also needs to be mentioned, but one thing is confirmed. Obama supporters (one at least on record) will use the police for reasons of personal vanity—and get away with it.

I speculate, but I have no doubt this was not the first time, nor will it be the last. Once a person develops a taste for power, especially police power, it tastes good. Cold calling (which is what telephone canvassing is called in marketing) is a hard job and rudeness is very common. People don't like to be interrupted with sales pitches. This makes the cold caller grumpy. I don't think it is a good idea to grant the power of the secret police to a grumpy liberal idealist during cold-calls.

If the accused was inconvenienced by both the accuser's cold call and the visit by the secret police, who then made a file on her, I wonder if the accuser gets punished for making a false accusation.

Somehow I doubt it. It's all behind closed doors anyway, as in any proper police state.


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Since the Obama campaign has done it and Obama will be if he elected picking all agency heads I mentioned I am more worried about Obama.

Baker: You are about to get what you want in the immortal words of H L Mencken: "Good and hard!"

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I bet if McCain's campaign did it, Objectivists wouldn't care.


I guarantee I know one who would. I even requested examples, which you apparently missed with your oversimplified rhetoric. I mentioned it above, but I will mention it again with a deletion to make the message even more clear:

"If anyone knows of such an abuse by a McCain supporter, this also needs to be mentioned..."

Let me make it even clearer for those challenged by my manner of writing:

Please post any such abuse by a McCain supporter. We need to see all the facts.

One thought just now crossed my mind. I sincerely hope you were not insinuating that just because a McCain supporter has not been found doing that, that it is OK for an Obama supporter to do it. You couldn't possibly mean that. One word of caution. Your rhetoric sounds like that is your message.

Thought police is an evil institution and must be combated by all.


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I heard stories of many people who had their Ron Paul materials confiscated at the National Convention. They were told: "This is McCain Country." This is theft.

Finally, there is the entire episode with the RNC 8. These people had done nothing. The pigs raided a couple house, stole a bunch of computers, and arrested people who had done nothing. Sheriff Fletcher, one of the leaders of this round up, already has a rap sheet of police corruption. That's no surprise.

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Mentioning a case is not documentation. The following is more like documentation and writing to an audience to present facts.

I am not too familiar with the RNC 8, so I read up on it. From what I have read so far, an anarchist group called the "RNC Welcoming Committee" (RNC = Republican National Convention) planned to crash the 2008 RNC convention (to use its own language) to try to disrupt its operations.

Law enforcement infiltrated the group with an undercover agent and paid informants for about a year-long investigation. Right before the convention, a raid was staged on RNC Welcoming Committee members, materials were confiscated and 8 members were arrested. The formal charge was "conspiracy to riot in the 2nd degree in the furtherance of terrorism," a 2nd degree felony.

I have found several accounts on the Internet that more or less gives the story.

Friends of the RNC 8. From the site:

The RNC 8 are organizers against the 2008 Twin Cities Republican National Convention who have been falsely charged in response to their political organizing: Luce Guillen-Givins, Max Specktor, Nathanael Secor, Eryn Trimmer, Monica Bicking, Erik Oseland, Robert Czernik and Garrett Fitzgerald.

On Saturday, August 30th 2008, the Ramsey County, Minnesota Sheriff’s Department executed search warrants on three houses, seizing personal and common household items and arresting RNC organizers Monica Bicking, Garrett Fitzgerald, Erik Oseland, Nathanael Secor, and Eryn Trimmer. Later that day Luce Guillen-Givins was arrested leaving a public meeting at a park. Rob Czernik and Max Specktor were arrested on Monday, September 1. These arrests were preemptive, targeting known organizers in an attempt to derail 2008 anti-RNC protests in St. Paul, MN before the convention had even begun. The “RNC 8″ are now charged with conspiracy to riot in the 2nd degree in the furtherance of terrorism, a 2nd degree felony which carries the possibility of several years in prison and is the first ever use of Minnesota’s PATRIOT Act.

Regardless of anything else, there's that damn Patriot Act again, only in State garb.

Ramsey County Charges RNC 8 Under State Patriot Act, Alleges Acts of Terrorism

Affidavits released by law enforcement which were filed in support of the search warrants used in raids over the weekend, and used to support probable cause for the arrest warrants, are based on paid, confidential informants who infiltrated the RNCWC on behalf of law enforcement. They allege that members of the group sought to kidnap delegates to the RNC, assault police officers with firebombs and explosives, and sabotage airports in St. Paul. Evidence released to date does not corroborate these allegations with physical evidence or provide any other evidence for these allegations than the claims of the informants.

Framing the ‘RNC 8

Sam Stoker

In These Times

October 8, 2008

In an unprecedented application of Minnesota’s version of the federal Patriot Act, eight members of the RNC Welcoming Committee, an anarchist organization, each face up to seven and a half years in prison for charges of “conspiracy to riot in furtherance of terrorism” for their alleged roles in RNC protest activities.

The charges against the eight individuals, now known as “The RNC 8,” follow a yearlong investigation in which the Ramsey County Sheriff’s Department, with the help of state and federal agencies, used an undercover agent and two paid informants to infiltrate and collect information on the organization.

On Aug. 30 and 31, the weekend preceding the RNC, the investigation culminated in a series of preemptive raids on several homes in the Twin Cities that the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Lawyer’s Guild (NLG) have condemned.

. . .

In a Sept. 3 statement, president of the Minnesota Chapter of the NLG, Bruce Nestor, who was at the scene of the raids, said police found no evidence of incendiary or bomb-making materials, and instead seized common household items such as computers, paint and hatchets for chopping wood, among other things. Nestor also noted that allegations that the anarchists intended to kidnap or sabotage airports came from paid informants.

“Based on past abuses of such informants by law enforcement, the National Lawyer’s Guild is concerned that such police informants have incentives to lie and exaggerate threats of violence and to also act as provocateurs in raising and urging support for acts of violence,” the statement said.

Givins, one of the RNC 8, says she wasn’t surprised police cracked down on protesters, but believes the nature of the arrests has serious implications.

(My bold above.)

Up to this point, it seems like the government actually was abusing its authority. So far, however, I don't see any evidence of this being a partisan thing. Even one of the RNC 8 members above, Givens, stated that she wasn't surprised at the crackdown. Right or wrong, this means they were expecting it.

And this leads me to believe that, to a certain point, the members themselves encouraged the arrests to get media mileage. These do not appear to be stupid people, so I think it more than plausible that they knew what they were doing.

RNC 8 evidence hearing postponed

Paul Demko

The Minnesota Independent

October 13, 2008

The RNC 8 members were arrested in the days leading up to the Republican National Convention and charged with a single count of “conspiracy to commit riot in the second degree in furtherance of terrorism.” The criminal complaint alleges that they were involved in an elaborate, nationwide plot to disrupt the convention that included plans to kidnap delegates, attack cops with urine and molotov cocktails and ultimately bring the proceedings to a standstill.

Attorney Larry Leventhal, who is representing Max Jacob Specktor, said after the aborted court hearing that the defense team needs additional time to scrutinize the evidence and tactics used to build the case against their clients, such as the use of confidential informants. “We really think it’s not going to show that there was a conspiracy to riot in support of terrorism,” he said. Leventhal added that the attorneys also want to examine what role the Federal Bureau of Investigation played in the investigation. “We believe they were probably directing the operation,” he said.

So regardless of allegations to the media, the defense team is admitting that it still has not examined the evidence to its satisfaction and that it has very little idea of the role of the Federal Government.

This leads me to believe that McCain had very little to do with this. I get the feeling that this was carried out to protect the integrity of the convention and the same effort was expended to the Democratic party. This was the government simply protecting the election process.

I do find some aspects of all this troubling, but not in the same manner as I found a disgruntled low-level campaign worker bringing the Secret Service to bear on a former USA Marine for rudeness and a clearly stated election opinion.

Just to be sure, I looked up the RNC Welcoming Committee. See for yourself that these are no angels. There's a reason they were investigated.

RNC Welcoming Committee

Crash the Convention! Sept 1-4, 2008

Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN

. . .

The RNC Welcoming Committee is an anarchist/anti-authoritarian organizing body formed to prepare for the 2008 Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minnesota. The RNC-WC, composed primarily of Twin Cities-based anarchists and anti-authoritarians, will function as an informational clearinghouse and organize a spokescouncil for RNC resistance.

. . .

Those who work with the RNC Welcoming Committee must agree to:

1. A rejection of Capitalism, Imperialism, and the State;

I didn't go much further because I looked up Capitalism, Imperialism, and the State according to the group's own definitions (which were linked. Here goes.


Capitalism: A Capitalist system values profit and material greed above everything else. The bosses own the machines and coerce profits out of the workers. They use their monopoly on wealth and control over institutions of force (the police) to pay the lowest possible ‘wages’. Capitalism is a distortion of the market to provide privileges to one class at everyone elses’ expense. This is the current economic system in almost the entire world.


Imperialism: When one nation, state, or economic system dominates another. Imperialism is at the heart of the current Bush administration’s policies.

The State

The State: A political organization that exists to support the ruling class by managing and policing people. The state is considered by most, though not by us, as the only modern institution that may legitimately use violence to achieve its goals, via the military and the police. The relationship between capitalism and the state can be clearly seen in the recent Enron and Halliburton scandals.

I think this stuff speaks for itself. I am disturbed at the abuse of government authority being displayed and I still loathe the Patriot Act, but I have very little sympathy for these thugs and boneheads.

Just for the sake of completeness, this is not an old group, at least according to web domain purchase. According to a Whois check, the domain was first registered on February 22, 2007.

I put this episode into the file folder of "Tribal Warfare," not "Defense of Liberty."


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I didn't go much further because I looked up Capitalism, Imperialism, and the State according to the group's own definitions (which were linked. Here goe

What does this have to do with anything, Michael? Do you support free speech or not? Do you support peaceful assembly or not? Do you believe in the principle of non-coercion?

You must feel that it is relevant, or you wouldn't have put it here. If it is relevant, then apparently you only think that the First Amendment applies to people who agree with you.

Here is another account of police harassment of peaceful demonstrators. This one in particular refers to how people were just rounded up on the street:

Here's a video of a peaceful protest involving veterans. One person was even trampled by the mounted pigs.

This must be a tough conflict for a few of the people who love the war. Soldiers who served in the war are now its most vocal protestors. I imagine they don't care. The crumbling empire and its murderous rampages around the world are just too important to them.

It's not hard for someone like Adam Kokesh, who is in the video. He took an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution. Unlike the "leadership" of this corrupt and decaying empire, he actually takes the oath seriously.

Really, the First Amendment is just an extension of the trader principle. It goes like this:

"Hi, there. I disagree with what you say. I defend your right to say it."

"I disagree with what you say. I also defend your right to say it."

The result is peace. Another result is that the good ideas win out.

The other principle is the Law of the Jungle--free speech is only for whoever has the biggest gang. If that happens, it won't be Objectivists who have the right of free speech.

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There's passive support and active support.

I don't think those boneheads and thugs you seem to admire would support my rights, so let them defend theirs the best they can.

If I ever get called for jury duty to judge a lawsuit of one of them, I will go with freedom principles, but that's about as far as I am interested in it.

I looked at the Kokesh video and, frankly, felt total indifference. He's a gang leader looking for followers and trying to get them with public displays of troublemaking wherever there is an audience for someone else's thing and taunting law enforcement officers. That whole scene bores me. Its make-believe trouble and make-believe solutions. Its BS.


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