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Posts Tagged ‘War on Drugs’

How the FBI’s War on Drugs Contributed to the 9/11 Attacks | The Libertarian Institute

Posted by M. C. on September 11, 2021

https://libertarianinstitute.org/articles/how-the-fbis-war-on-drugs-contributed-to-the-9-11-attacks/

by Stark Realities with Brian McGlinchey

The story of 9/11 is filled with painful “what-ifs.” Among the most prominent:

  • What if the CIA hadn’t blocked two FBI agents from alerting Bureau headquarters that a future 9/11 hijacker had obtained a multi-entry U.S. visa?
  • What if the FBI hadn’t nixed agents’ request for a warrant to search the computer of “20th hijacker” Zacharias Moussaoui after his arrest in August 2001?
  • What if the FBI hadn’t ignored a Phoenix agent’s July 2001 recommendation to contact aviation colleges across the country, on suspicion that Osama bin Laden was preparing extremists to “conduct terror activity against civilian aviation targets”?

Those what-ifs give us all pause, but they weigh heaviest on those who were closest to them, such as retired FBI counterterrorism agent Ken Williams, author of the so-called “Phoenix memo.”

Though his unheeded warning about extremists at flight schools looms large in the saga of 9/11, Williams is haunted by two more what-ifs that are lesser-known but equally gut-wrenching:

  • What if his request for a surveillance team to monitor bin Laden disciples at an Arizona aviation school hadn’t been declined in favor of the FBI’s pursuit of drug smugglers?
  • What if he hadn’t been ordered to suspend his investigation of those extremists for several months to help with an arson case?

For Williams, the answer is all too clear: His investigation would have led to the scrutiny of two future 9/11 hijackers—and that scrutiny may have started unraveling the entire plot.

Extremists at Embry-Riddle

See the rest here

About Stark Realities with Brian McGlinchey

STARK REALITIES WITH BRIAN McGLINCHEY is a Substack newsletter that undermines official narratives, demolishes conventional wisdom and exposes fundamental myths across the political spectrum. McGlinchey has spoken at the national conference of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, and has appeared on the Scott Horton Show, Tom Woods Show and Ron Paul Liberty Report. Receive new Stark Realities posts via email

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The Most Shameful Conservative Attack on Drug Legalization – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on July 28, 2021

One, drugs have not been legalized, so it is impossible to say that drug legalization is a disaster.

But drugs are illegal, so how could legalizing them be responsible for conditions that already exists?

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2021/07/laurence-m-vance/the-most-shameful-conservative-attack-on-drug-legalization/

By Laurence M. Vance

Christopher Bedford is against drug legalization. He is really against drug legalization. He is so against drug legalization that he penned the most shameful conservative attack on drug legalization that I have ever read—and I have read a lot of conservative attacks on drug legalization during the time that I have written over 100 articles on the drug war.

Beford is the author of the article “Drug Legalization Is a Disaster, and Your Leaders Don’t Care About You,” published by The Federalist.

I had actually never heard of Bedford until I came across his article. According to his bio:

Christopher Bedford is a senior editor at The Federalist, the vice chairman of Young Americans for Freedom, a board member at the National Journalism Center, and the author of The Art of the Donald. His work has been featured in The American Mind, National Review, the New York Post and the Daily Caller, where he led the Daily Caller News Foundation and spent eight years. A frequent guest on Fox News and Fox Business, he was raised in Massachusetts and lives on Capitol Hill.

Let’s begin at the beginning with the title: “Drug Legalization Is a Disaster, and Your Leaders Don’t Care About You.” Just the title is enough to dismiss this article as the ravings of an incorrigible drug warrior.

One, drugs have not been legalized, so it is impossible to say that drug legalization is a disaster. It is true that 36 states have legalized the medical use of marijuana, 27 states have decriminalized the possession of marijuana, and 18 states have legalized the recreational marijuana. But marijuana is still illegal on the federal level, the possession of marijuana that is not a criminal offense is a small amount, the legalization of marijuana for medical or recreational use is full of regulations and restrictions, and it is only marijuana that has been “legalized”—not cocaine, not heroin, not fentanyl, not meth, not LSD, not ecstasy.

And two, who doesn’t know that our “leaders” don’t care about us? They care about themselves, their power, and their next election. We have never meant anything to them but a dollar, a vote, and a serf to be told how to live our lives. Who would waste his time writing an article about how our “leaders” don’t care about us? And who would waste his time reading it?

Now we can move on to the first paragraph:

America has been fighting a war on drugs for decades now, and for almost as long we’ve been told by the left and many libertarians on the right that the best way to end the war is to surrender. Legalizing drugs, they say, would solve a bunch of our country’s problems, including high rates of imprisonment, fatherlessness, crime, cartel activity, excess overdose deaths, budget deficits. The list goes on.

First of all, America has not been fighting anything. The federal government is the entity that declared war on drugs, not America or the American people—two things that should never be confused with the federal government.

Second, very few on the left want to end the war on drugs. Many of them want to legalize and tax and regulate marijuana, but not all drugs or even any other drug. When the Democrats controlled the House and the Senate during the first two years of Obama’s presidency, they could have easily legalized some or all drugs on the federal level, yet they didn’t even attempt to legalize marijuana. Neither President Biden nor any other Democrat who ran for president called for the legalization of drugs. Drug freedom is not a tenet of liberalism.

Third, there are no libertarians on the right. Libertarianism is neither left nor right, as Walter Block has famously said. There are Republicans, conservatives, and constitutionalists who are libertarian-leaning, but most of them would eschew the label libertarian and reject some of libertarianism’s precepts.

Fourth, the way to end the war on drugs is to end it. This is a one-sided war. There is no one or no thing to surrender to. There are no drugs storming America’s beaches, dropping from the skies, invading from Canada, jumping out of trees, coming up out of the ground, or trying to break down our doors. The federal government should just acknowledge that the war on drugs has been a disaster for individual liberty and property rights, has failed to stop the availability and use of drugs, has misdirected and corrupted law enforcement, and is a monstrous evil that has ruined more lives than drugs themselves and simply end it.

Fifth, legalizing drugs would help solve a bunch of our country’s problems because it is the drug war that is responsible for a part of the problems. High rates of imprisonment? Partly because of the war on drugs. Fatherlessness? Partly because of the war on drugs. Crime? Partly because of the war on drugs. Cartel activity? Partly because of the war on drugs. Excess overdose deaths? Partly because of the war on drugs. Budget deficits. Legalizing and taxing drugs, even at astronomical levels, would not end budget deficits. These are caused by profligate members of Congress and state legislators who squander the taxpayers’ money. Libertarians don’t believe that the government should legalize drugs so that the drugs can be taxed to alleviate budget deficits. Libertarians don’t believe that drugs should be taxed at all. And yes, the list does go on. Ending the drug war would unclog the judicial system, cut down on violence, reduce unlawful searches and seizures, restore financial privacy, stop hindering legitimate pain treatment, and protect civil liberties.

The rest of the article goes on to blame drugs for “ripping apart your city, your town, your neighborhood” or “your friends, your siblings, your children”; homelessness; encampments “completely overrun by filthy, barely clothed muttering madmen”; walkers on trails reeking of human waste “menaced by junkies on couches blocking the trail and underneath the bridges”; carjackings; the public harassment of women; unemployment; estrangement from families; robberies; and filth-covered lawns.

But drugs are illegal, so how could legalizing them be responsible for conditions that already exists?

Bedford may have written some other things that are worth reading, but when it comes to the subject of drugs he has lost his mind. He has not only written the most shameful conservative attack on drug legalization, but the most stupid one as well. He is an embarrassment to real conservatives.

Laurence M. Vance [send him mail] writes from central Florida. He is the author of The War on Drugs Is a War on Freedom; War, Christianity, and the State: Essays on the Follies of Christian Militarism; War, Empire, and the Military: Essays on the Follies of War and U.S. Foreign Policy; King James, His Bible, and Its Translators, and many other books. His newest books are Free Trade or Protectionism? and The Free Society.

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Erie Times E-Edition Article-War on drugs imprisoned millions of Black Americans

Posted by M. C. on July 26, 2021

Another decades long government program that doesn’t work but gets bigger budgets and more regulation every year.

https://erietimes-pa-app.newsmemory.com/?publink=586ddff1e_1345e4a

Landscaping was hardly his lifelong dream.

As a teenager, Alton Lucas believed basketball or music would pluck him out of North Carolina and take him around the world. In the late 1980s, he was the right-hand man to his musical best friend, Youtha Anthony Fowler, who many hip hop and R&B heads know as DJ Nabs.

But rather than jet-setting with Fowler, Lucas discovered drugs and the drug trade at the height of the so-called war on drugs. Addicted to crack cocaine and involved in trafficking the drug, he faced decades-long imprisonment at a time when the drug abuse and violence plaguing major cities and working class Black communities were not seen as the public health issue that opioids are today.

By chance, Lucas received a rare bit of mercy. He got the kind of help that many Black and Latino Americans struggling through the crack epidemic did not: treatment, early release and what many would consider a fresh start.

“I started the landscaping company, to be honest with you, because nobody would hire me because I have a felony,” said Lucas. His Sunflower Landscaping got a boost in 2019 with the help of Inmates to Entrepreneurs, a national nonprofit assisting people with criminal backgrounds by providing practical entrepreneurship education.

Lucas was caught up in a system that imposes lifetime limits on most people who have served time for drug crimes, with little thought given to their ability to rehabilitate. In addition to being denied employment, those with criminal records can be limited in their access to business and educational loans, housing, child custody rights, voting rights and gun rights.

It’s a system that was born when Lu-

See WAR ON DRUGS, Page 3A

“I started the landscaping company, to be honest with you, because nobody would hire me because I have a felony.”

Alton Lucas

Following the passage of stiffer penalties for crack cocaine and other drugs, the Black incarceration rate in America exploded from about 600 per 100,000 people in 1970 to 1,808 in 2000. DOUGLAS C. PIZAC/AP

Continued from Page 1A

cas was barely out of diapers.

Fifty years ago this summer, President Richard Nixon declared a war on drugs. Today, with the U.S. mired in a deadly opioid epidemic that did not abate during the coronavirus pandemic’s worst days, it is questionable whether anyone won the war.

Yet the loser is clear: Black and Latino Americans, their families and their communities. A key weapon was the imposition of mandatory minimums in prison sentencing. Decades later those harsh federal and state penalties led to an increase in the prison industrial complex that saw millions of people, primarily of color, locked up and shut out of the American dream….

Why bother reading anymore. Same old government story.

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Want to Make Drugs Less Lethal? Legalize Them. | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on October 31, 2020

The paper shows that the prohibition of drugs causes illegal drugs to be produced that are more potent and dangerous than if they were produced legally and commercially. It was a simple application of the Alchian–Allen effect,

The purpose of this article is to explore what happens when an illegal good is legalized, especially in terms of potency and safety.

https://mises.org/wire/want-make-drugs-less-lethal-legalize-them?utm_source=Mises+Institute+Subscriptions&utm_campaign=136746a46f-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_9_21_2018_9_59_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_8b52b2e1c0-136746a46f-228343965

Mark Thornton

Marijuana, i.e., cannabis, is now legal in eleven states for recreational use, thirty-three states for medical purposes, and another sixteen states have decriminalized it (usually fines for possession of small amounts). The upcoming election will see several legalization ballot measures, including recreational use legalization in Arizona, Montana, and New Jersey and medical use in Mississippi. South Dakota will have both medical and recreational legalization measures on the ballot and Oregon will have ballot measures that would decriminalize all drugs and another that would legalize psilocybin, i.e., “magic mushrooms,” for purposes of helping people with certain mental health issues.

In the mid-1980s, at the pinnacle of the war on drugs, I wrote a paper for one of my graduate classes on the potency of illegal drugs. The paper shows that the prohibition of drugs causes illegal drugs to be produced that are more potent and dangerous than if they were produced legally and commercially. It was a simple application of the Alchian–Allen effect, where a lump-sum cost like a tax or transport cost (in this case risk) is added to two different grades of the same product, such as high-potency and low-potency cannabis, decreasing the relative price of the higher-grade product. Some people refer to this as simply “getting a bigger bang for your buck.”

It did, however, get a good deal of attention. Richard Cowan later dubbed the effect “The Iron Law of Prohibition” in National Review in order to explain the new phenomenon of crack cocaine.1 Judge Jim Gray called it the “cardinal rule of prohibition,” in his 2001 book and noted that it is a most compelling argument for the legalization of drugs.2

This “law” certainly did seem to explain the illegal drug market that had consisted of a large low-potency cannabis market and small markets for cocaine and heroin prior to President Nixon’s declaration of a “war on drugs” in 1972. By the turn of the century, the market had evolved into high-potency cannabis, crack cocaine, crystal meth, high-potency heroin, and superpotent chemical narcotics such as fentanyl.

However, policy began to change around the turn of the century. Several US states and countries began to decriminalize cannabis, adopting medical cannabis rules, and eventually some states started to outright legalize it in opposition to federal and international authority. In 2000, Portugal decriminalized all illegal drugs.

Theory

The purpose of this article is to explore what happens when an illegal good is legalized, especially in terms of potency and safety. I have heard several anecdotes that legalized cannabis is now more potent than ever, but theory would argue otherwise, ceteris paribus.

The expected outcomes from legalizing a formerly criminalized good are straightforward. Obviously, costs, i.e., risk, will fall, and with competition price will decrease as well. This will increase the quantity demanded and sold.

The market will expand in several likely ways. First, current consumers of the illegal good can increase their quantity demanded. Second, new consumers will enter the market, likely those who were afraid of being caught and punished in the illegal market and others who now see it as safe and effective for their purposes. Third, consumption will increase if new uses are found or rediscovered for the product. All this increased consumption of a drug may seem troubling, but the opposite is the case.

We should expect the observed quantity produced and consumed in the market to expand dramatically. However, we would not necessarily expect this to take place in a dramatic or dangerous way. It might appear to be somewhat chaotic from an historical vantage point as “mom and pop” operations in production and distribution are replaced by commercial growers and chain stores, and eventually by large-scale, vertically organized global operations. This happens in most cases of new consumer products over a period of many years.

But what about product potency? Would it be the case that growers, wholesalers, retailers, and consumers would continue to chase even more potent products? Or would there be a tendency for less potent products as other aspects or characteristics of the good are enhanced? Theory would suggest that potency would decrease, or at least not continue to increase as during prohibition.

A related and just as important question would be the variability of potency. Would it be the case that the potency of cannabis would be vastly different from one purchase to the next? Common sense and knowledge would suggest that product potency would become standardized and similar from purchase to purchase. Many companies have been working on more standardized cannabis products.

Indeed, we would expect the product potency spectrum to be standardized in line with consumer preference. Producers would want to take advantage of name brand recognition in order to promote their long-run profitability and to protect the value of their sunk cost investments. Therefore, we should expect name brands and potency labeling of products where possible. This standardization feature of legal markets is extremely important to the cases of more dangerous drugs, such as heroin, where the variability of potency contributes to most overdose deaths.

What Has Happened?

I have written about these issues in the past,3 but now we have evidence of what has happened with legalized cannabis. Let me caution: data does not a theory make. That caution is particularly necessary when discussing markets transitioning from illegal drugs to legal drugs in a haphazard, state-by-state fashion. Likewise, it is very difficult to discern why a consumer is buying a product and all the ramifications of that consumption. Finally, government regulations and propaganda at the federal level are injecting confusion, misinformation, and uncertainty about the cannabis legalization movement.4

With that said, we do know that the consumption of illegal cannabis has increased dramatically in states that have legalized medical and recreational consumption. The shift is not complete, because regulations, restrictions, and high taxes have helped keep the illegal market alive. No doubt consumption is higher among traditional consumers, but the extent of the increase is difficult to discern. The advent of new product choices such as gummies, cookies, and vape pens will also cause both substitution and an increase in the overall quantity demanded of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.

Another major source of product substitution is from the consumption of alcohol and tobacco to consumption of cannabis. For example, after the State of Washington legalized cannabis, the quantity of alcohol and tobacco demanded declined by double-digit amounts. Other studies have found much higher percentages in select populations.5 Not surprisingly, alcohol and tobacco interest groups are donors to campaigns that attempt to prevent the legalization of cannabis. Other contributors to those political campaigns include the for-profit prison industry, the pharmaceutical industry, and gambling interests.

The list of medical applications for cannabis is long and growing. Cannabis is thought to aid with pain, anxiety, sleep, and appetite, so it can help people with underlying health conditions treat those conditions or people who are being treated for things such as AIDS or cancer. It is also being studied as an aid or treatment for epilepsy, certain types of seizures and tumors, and has long been known as a treatment for glaucoma.

People are also using it in place of, or in addition to, psychoactive drugs for conditions such as anxiety and addiction to narcotics and alcohol and in lieu of pain medications such as oxycodone and Vicodin. Generally, this represents the substitution of low-cost cannabis, with its minimal negative effects, for expensive drugs with significant side effects and/or lack of effectiveness.

With the recent legalization of hemp, a cannabis-like plant, there has been a massive increase in the availability and use of CBD, a nonpsychoactive component in cannabis. In oil form, it is applied or consumed for medical conditions such as pain, anxiety, and inflammation, and the plant’s dried flowers are smoked recreationally. This industry has quickly expanded across the country, siphoning off demand for legal and illegal cannabis.

One little thing we do know from the government itself is that the potency of illegal cannabis has increased from less than 4 percent in 1993 to over 17 percent in 2017.6 There are also some very high-potency legal cannabis products in the marketplace for recreational use, where smaller doses are consumed, and also for specific medical applications.

During Prohibition (1920–33) alcohol was produced in an extremely potent form. It was also of very poor quality in that it often smelled bad, tasted bad, and could make you sick to your stomach. Bartenders in speakeasies had to experiment with things like fruit juices and dairy products to make it palatable for their customers. After Prohibition was repealed, alcohol was again produced as beer, wine, and whiskey that you could drink straight or on the rocks. Average potency fell dramatically, and quality increased significantly too.

With that in mind, we should expect conditions in the legal cannabis market to continue to evolve in order to better serve the consumer. That would mean increased product information and quality, as well as new products and applications to serve consumers. It might also mean a decrease in average THC potency, especially when you consider the increased consumption of CBD oil and hemp flower products. In the words of FDR, “The only thing you have to fear, is fear itself.”

  • 1. Richard Cowan, “How the Narcs Created Crack: A War against Ourselves,” National Review, Dec. 5, 1986, 26–34. 
  • 2. James P. Gray, Why Our Drug Laws Have Failed: A Judicial Indictment of the War on Drugs. (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2001).
  • 3. Mark Thornton, “The Potency of Illegal Drugs.” Journal of Drug Issues 28, no. 3 (1998): 725-40. Academic Search Premier. This article was based on my original paper in graduate school. It was submitted to the Journal of Political Economy and received two revise and resubmits but was never accepted. It was a chapter in my book The Economics of Prohibition, which was published by the University of Utah State Press in 1991.
  • 4. Mark Thornton, “Drug Warriors Claim Colorado Going to Pot,” Mises Daily, Sept. 9, 2014, https://mises.org/library/drug-warriors-claim-colorado-going-pot.
  • 5. Amanda Reiman, “Cannabis as a Substitute for Alcohol and Other Drugs,” Harm Reduction Journal 6 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1186/1477-7517-6-35.
  • 6. Suman Chandra, Mohamed M. Radwan, Chandrani G. Majumdar, James C. Church, Tom P. Freeman, and Mahmoud A. ElSohly, “New Trends in Cannabis Potency in USA and Europe during the Last Decade (2008–2017). European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience 269 (February 2019): 5–15. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00406-019-00983-5.

Author:

Contact Mark Thornton

Mark Thornton is a Senior Fellow at the Mises Institute and the book review editor of the Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics. He has authored seven books and is a frequent guest on national radio shows.

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Insiders – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on October 28, 2020

The best remaining scam other than printing money and illegal drug trade is healthcare, where else can you sell emergency room stitches for $1000 apiece? If you get admitted to a hospital it is $6,000 per night hotel with bad food, no bar and for that pleasure you will get woken up every four hours to check vitals: blood pressure and temperature. Should they do anything to you that number goes higher quickly.

The War on Drugs was really a war on individual freedom and their constitutional protections – drug criminal has no rights: to be accused is to be guilty.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/10/george-giles/insiders/

By George Giles

Here is a hypothetical scenario. It is based on insiders and outsiders. If you can call the President of the United States on the phone and talk to him you are an insider, otherwise you are an outsider. As Dan Aykroyd so elegantly showed in the movie Trading Places, outsiders, standing in the cold rain, get to press their nose against the glass and see what the insiders are enjoying.

Twenty years ago I read a book called ‘Blowback’ and the basic theme was that the illegal drug trade was so profitable that it kept the US gov’t, banks and stock exchange from cratering because of a century of mis-management via wars, taxes and paper money; that all our wars were just excuses to let the government do whatever it wanted and keep the whole charade going longer. The War on Drugs was really a war on individual freedom and their constitutional protections – drug criminal has no rights: to be accused is to be guilty.

The best remaining scam other than printing money and illegal drug trade is healthcare, where else can you sell emergency room stitches for $1000 apiece? If you get admitted to a hospital it is $6,000 per night hotel with bad food, no bar and for that pleasure you will get woken up every four hours to check vitals: blood pressure and temperature. Should they do anything to you that number goes higher quickly.

Eight trillion dollars were printed and $300 billion given to individuals. Where did the other seven trillion seven hundred billion and change go? Guaranteed we will never know. So now Blowback makes more sense – freedom for financial innovation i.e. scams is getting more limited.

The US is now well over the point where national debt being is greater than one year pre-covid GDP and realistically after printing 20+ trillion dollars, a dollar for dollar accounting effort is not only unlikely, it is probably also hopeless; pretty much any fiscal responsibility is long gone. Trump/Biden are now in a race to see who wants to give away the most $$ for election.

When the US economy gets a cold (recession) all the other economies go on life support (depression) so by that logic crippling the US economy will kill others around the world.

The drums are beating now against Russia/China. Everyday you hear something new about them. Our government always needs an enemy even if they have to make one up like Vietnam or War on Terror/Drugs/Racism/Sexism whatever.

Value is subjective, it is based upon perception and everyone’s perception is different from everyone else’s. As Ludwig von Mises demonstrated in his epic ‘Human Action’ value is based upon acting man’s dissatisfaction with something and then trying to ease that mental tension by acting, doing something, creating value. Imagine the satisfaction of sitting in the cold rain until one of your buddies shows you a nice dry cave. Another genius rubs sticks together with leaves, dry wood and a warm fire appears. This mental tension of dissatisfaction has driven our primitive tribe based hunter/gatherers to our modern economies. Nonetheless value still remains subjective.

If we wanted to decimate the hopelessly corrupt Chinese government all we need do is default on our bonds then block all Chinese imports. We are already block their semiconductor business (Huawei) and are trying to get other countries to go along.

The wealthy elite have literally all their wealth predicated upon ownership of stocks/bonds and trust accounts (I trust you to give me back my money). History has shown stocks/bonds and paper money always become worthless eventually. This means that the world’s wealthiest man for example, Jeff Bezos, can become a pauper like the rest of us when the paper goes to 0 value. The whole purpose of the Federal Reserve System is to protect the wealthy and things they own like banks.

What von Mises proved using deductive logic is that specie based money (gold/silver) is the only system that does not fail. With such a system the economy undergoes slow gentle deflation. When this happens the value of savings, that is capital, grows slowly over time. Prices continue to fall which makes a workers income have greater and greater purchasing power. Modern bankers are the one class of people that have no purpose in this system, their thieving system of inflation is gone. Sadly every significant economy in the world is fiat/paper currency based.

We cannot let the common man profit at the bankers expense. ALL banks are inherently unstable, they start that way, they live that way and they die that way. There is not a bank in existence that can tolerate a run on their debts. Cash bank deposits are debts, not assets. The assets a bank has are outstanding loans. As happened many times in history. Bank runs are just deposits the account holders  have and they now want their money back. Cannot allow the common man control his future!

Franklin Delano Rosevelt, worshipped by most politician’s, repudiated the contract with Americans exchanging gold for dollars which had been the law. He seized all gold bullion in the country. He followed this up by making ownership of gold except pre 1933 US coins a crime. He did not announce this in his campaign. The day he took office he ended prohibition. The gold seizure got lost in the frenzy.

The power FDR had has been worshipped by the vast majority of national level politicians. The Federal Register documents in excruciating detail leviathan’s strangling control and the end of freedom. A free country has no need of classified laws (Patriot Act) however an unfree country requires a vast spy network and a secret police. Facebook, Google, Twitter, Internet (your cell phone is just a computer on Class A non-routable but private network) and location information (where your cell phone has pinged) is stored along with every email and text ever sent.

The US now has all the tools in place for the President to do whatever he/she wants. Crush China then repudiate bonds. This will also bring the rest of the world to its knees. Politicians actually despise the wealthy out of simple resentment but historically they have been tolerated in order to facilitate politician’s dreams. These ‘useful idiots’ as Stalin said are essential to the plan to take control.

On the bright side the United States Government has proven that along with its allies (more useful idiots) it can be completely self-sufficient in food, energy and manufacturing as we demonstrated so ably in World War II. Estimates on the casualties of World War II were between 50 and 100 million deaths; US deaths under 300,000. Very very cost effective. To the government an individual is just another tool in the toolbelt.

World War III is not going to be fought with nuclear weapons or large standing armies. It will be fought with paper. American citizens will be allowed to have blue dollars. Green dollars will be just to light your cigars with should you have any then.

Historically every empire ultimately dies at the bank. Battlefields just accelerate the process.

President Donald Trump was elected against the mainstream media’s collective desires and they have been in a froth over this. They thought it was their sacred duty to say who wins and loses. They got drunk with power when they got the Arkansas Rube Clinton elected.

While Trump is human thus like the rest of us and has many flaws he has steadfastly refused to start anymore wars no matter how loud our media sycophants have brayed about them. This is where covid comes in, kill the economy, and the people will be so desperate for help which is to say socialism! As von Mises has shown it is always a product of the wealthy. As he said “Socialism is for those who would think and must be prevented.” The covid pandemic has gone a long way to scare the world and make them desperate for the help that only strong central governments can provide. Sadly a socialist country always runs out of other people’s money. Socialism drains the future for the present. Capital that could be used in productive future enterprises gets drained by the political present. The problem with this, as von Mises has shown, economies thus become fragile and some unplanned exigence renders them helpless since there is no capital available to construct a solution.

So in the event the President will not take your call then you are an outsider. You will not make things happen, things will happen to you. Outsiders just ride the big wave, hoping not to drown but incapable of determining where it goes or what it hits. All empires fall. The only question is when. Don’t let it fall on you and yours.

“The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits.” ~Albert Einstein

The Best of George Giles George Giles [send him mail] spent 15 years working at an elite private University and Medical Center. Mercifully he got early retirement for time served. In college in Detroit he worked in the meat processing industry. If you like sausage/healthcare then you do not want to see what goes on behind the scenes at the slaughterhouse.

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Judicial Tyranny in the Drug War

Posted by M. C. on August 28, 2020

It makes you wonder how someone who is intelligent enough to get a law degree can end up with such a ludicrous and illogical mindset. Wood’s draconian sentences accomplished nothing. And neither did the draconian sentences metered out by other federal judges in the 1970s.

Some might argue that the solution to this drug-war madness is better education in American law schools. I say that the solution is to legalize drugs. In that way, it won’t matter how much federal judges want to do their part to“win” the war on drugs through the imposition of  draconian jail sentences because there no longer will be drug-war prosecutions in federal court.

Judicial Tyranny in the Drug War

by

If you still have any doubts about the tyranny of the federal government’s beloved “war on drugs,” perhaps the case of Juan Carlos Seresi, Vahe Andonian, and Nazareth Andonian will remove them.

Back in 1991, a federal judge named William D. Keller sentenced these three men to 500 years in jail for a non-violent drug offense—i.e., laundering drug money.

Yes, you read that right — 500 years!

Why, that’s just plain stupid. Any lawyer that has gone to any decent law school knows that most people die before they are 200 years old. What law school did Keller attend?

Or maybe it’s just plain vicious. Making known his intention to play a role in “winning” the “war on drugs,” Keller, who was appointed to the bench by conservative President Ronald Reagan, declared, “I intend to deter forevermore anybody doing anything like this.”

Wouldn’t you love to ask the honorable Judge Keller how his draconian policy of deterrence has worked out for him? I mean, exactly how many people did he deter from engaging in drug-law violations with his 500-year jail sentences for those three men? Correct me if I’m wrong but there have been countless people engaging in the drug trade since 1991, when Keller imposed those 500-year jail sentences. Obviously, none of them was deterred by Keller’s tyrannical jail sentences.

The fact is that Keller policy of deterrence accomplished nothing. All it did was ruin the lives of three men and their families. Even if a few people were deterred by his 500-year jail sentences, it didn’t make any difference because there were more than enough people who were not deterred to ensure a plentiful supply of drugs for American drug consumers.

Other federal judicial tyranny

Of course, Keller isn’t the only federal judge who has vowed to do his part to “win” the war on drugs. There have been many other federal judges over the years who have had the same mindset.

When I was a young lawyer back in Texas back in the 1970s there was a federal judge in San Antonio named John Wood. His moniker was “Maximum John.” Why did lawyers and others call him that? Because his policy was to mete out the maximum possible jail sentences to drug-war violators. Like Keller some 15 years later, Wood was determined to “deter” people from engaging in the drug trade. Like Keller, Wood was doing his part to “win” the war on drugs with his maximum jail sentences.

It makes you wonder how someone who is intelligent enough to get a law degree can end up with such a ludicrous and illogical mindset. Wood’s draconian sentences accomplished nothing. And neither did the draconian sentences metered out by other federal judges in the 1970s. Wasn’t Keller aware of this phenomenon when he meted out those 500-year jail sentences to those three men in the 1990s? When Keller was in law school, didn’t they teach him about Judge Wood and other federal judges doing the same thing that Keller would be doing when he would later become a federal judge. Didn’t they teach him the futility of such judicial tyranny?

Early release from prison?

According to an article on CNN.com, recently federal prosecutors agreed with defense attorneys that Seresi, Andonian, and Andonia should now be released from prison, after spending some 30 years there. The reason revolves around the original prosecutors in the case failing to disclose exculpatory evidence to the defendants that revolved around special treatment having been accorded a prosecution witness in the case.

You would think that that would be the end of the matter, right?

Not so. It turns out that a federal judge has to approve the deal. In the case, the federal judge, whose name is Joseph V. Wilson, is a former federal prosecutor who served under Judge Keller when he was a federal prosecutor before becoming a federal judge. Wilson ruled that the exculpatory evidence wasn’t enough to affect the outcome of the original trial. He denied the defendants’ motions for release. Seresi, Andonian, and Andonia are now appealing his order.

Some might argue that the solution to this drug-war madness is better education in American law schools. I say that the solution is to legalize drugs. In that way, it won’t matter how much federal judges want to do their part to“win” the war on drugs through the imposition of  draconian jail sentences because there no longer will be drug-war prosecutions in federal court.


This post was written by:

Jacob G. Hornberger is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation. He was born and raised in Laredo, Texas, and received his B.A. in economics from Virginia Military Institute and his law degree from the University of Texas. He was a trial attorney for twelve years in Texas. He also was an adjunct professor at the University of Dallas, where he taught law and economics. In 1987, Mr. Hornberger left the practice of law to become director of programs at the Foundation for Economic Education. He has advanced freedom and free markets on talk-radio stations all across the country as well as on Fox News’ Neil Cavuto and Greta van Susteren shows and he appeared as a regular commentator on Judge Andrew Napolitano’s show Freedom Watch. View these interviews at LewRockwell.com and from Full Context. Send him email.

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To Understand BLM – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on June 30, 2020

Why is it BLM’s aim to disrupt ordinary families, and not to promote families with fathers?

Why does BLM focus on black women and largely ignore black men?

Why is BLM’s leadership Marxist and trained to be Marxist?

Why is BLM willing to attack images of Jesus and religious places of worship?

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/06/michael-s-rozeff/to-understand-blm/

By

“The Black Lives Matter movement (BLM) casts itself as a spontaneous uprising born of inner city frustration, but is, in fact, the latest and most dangerous face of a web of well-funded communist/socialist organizations that have been agitating against America for decades.”

However, if you do not believe that conclusion and the evidence leading to it, then to understand the true nature of BLM, ask questions like the following and reach your own conclusion.

Why is the BLM aim to defund police, and not to defund the War on Drugs? The latter is what fills the prisons with black lives.

Why is BLM willing to defund police without having a viable alternative system?

Why does BLM aim to tear down the policing of black communities, including that which is directed at violent crimes?

Why does BLM want to release violent criminals from prisons?

Why is BLM so dead set against people who have built up wealth?

Why does BLM want reparations from whites, whoever they may be, when they cannot possibly identify past perpetrators and link them to victims in the present?

Why does BLM blame everything relating to black people on racism, when this case cannot be rationally sustained?

Why does BLM disregard rational argument and replace it with rhetoric, slogans and demands?

Why is it BLM’s aim to disrupt ordinary families, and not to promote families with fathers?

Why does BLM focus on black women and largely ignore black men?

Why is BLM’s leadership Marxist and trained to be Marxist?

Why does BLM paint today’s society as systemically racist when it is not?

Why does BLM promote the fiction that faulty theories of race that used to be prevalent generations ago are at work discriminating against black people today?

Why does BLM attack capitalism, free enterprise and free markets?

Why does BLM violently attack speech that opposes their views?

Why doesn’t BLM dissociate itself from antifa and its violence?

Why doesn’t BLM condemn rioting and looting, especially that which destroys black businesses and communities?

Why is BLM willing to burn down the system?

Why is BLM willing to attack images of Jesus and religious places of worship?

Why is BLM not transparent financially? Why do they conceal their financial statements?

Why does a BLM leader speak of forming a military arm?

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Repealing Useless and Abusive Laws Might Do More Good Than “Defunding” the Police | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on June 23, 2020

Unfortunately, there are endless pretexts for people to be arrested nowadays, because federal, state, and local politicians and officials have criminalized daily life with hundreds of thousands of edicts. As Gerard Arenberg, executive director of the National Association of Chiefs of Police, told me in the 1996, “We have so damn many laws, you can’t drive the streets without breaking the law. I could write you a hundred tickets depending on what you said to me when I stopped you.”

How many “Defund the Police” activists are also calling for a radical rollback of politicians’ prerogatives to punish almost any activity they disapprove? There will be some reforms and plenty of promises, but as long as cops have pretexts to harass and assail millions of peaceful Americans every day, the outrages will not end.

https://mises.org/wire/repealing-useless-and-abusive-laws-might-do-more-good-defunding-police?utm_source=Mises+Institute+Subscriptions&utm_campaign=3b7910b97c-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_9_21_2018_9_59_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_8b52b2e1c0-3b7910b97c-228343965

“Defund the Police” is the latest rallying cry for protestors in many cities across the nation. Many activists, enraged by the brutal killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police, are calling for completely disbanding the police, while others are seeking reductions in police budgets and more government spending elsewhere. However, few activists appear to be calling for a fundamental decrease in the political power that is the root cause of police abuses.

Many “Defund the Police” activists favor ending the war on drugs. That would be a huge leap forward toward making police less intrusive and oppressive. But even if police were no longer making a million plus drug arrests each year, they would still be making more than 9 million other arrests. Few protestors appear to favor the sweeping repeals that could take tens of millions of Americans out of the legal crosshairs.

How many of the “Defund the Police” protestors would support repealing mandatory seatbelt laws as a step toward reducing police power? In 2001, the Supreme Court ruled that police can justifiably arrest anyone believed to have “committed even a very minor criminal offense.” That case involved Gail Atwater, a Texas mother who was driving slowly near her home but, because her children were not wearing seatbelts, was taken away by an abusive cop whose shouting left her children “terrified and hysterical.” A majority of Supreme Court justices recognized that “Atwater’s claim to live free of pointless indignity and confinement clearly outweighs anything the City can raise against it specific to her case”—but upheld the arrest anyhow. Justice Sandra Day O’Connor warned that “such unbounded discretion carries with it grave potential for abuse.”

Unfortunately, there are endless pretexts for people to be arrested nowadays, because federal, state, and local politicians and officials have criminalized daily life with hundreds of thousands of edicts. As Gerard Arenberg, executive director of the National Association of Chiefs of Police, told me in the 1996, “We have so damn many laws, you can’t drive the streets without breaking the law. I could write you a hundred tickets depending on what you said to me when I stopped you.”

What about repealing state laws that make parents criminals if they smoke a cigarette while driving little Bastian or Alison to soccer practice? What about repealing the federal law that compelled states to criminalize anyone drinking one beer in their car—or, better yet, repealing the federal law that compelled states to raise the age for drinking alcohol to twenty-one? Or would today’s enraged reformers prefer to take the risk of cops beating the hell out of any twenty-year-old caught with a Bud Light?

Would feminist zealots calling to “Defund the Police” be willing to tolerate the legalization of sex work? That would mean they could no longer howl about vast “human trafficking” conspiracies exploiting young girls every time an undercover cop is illicitly groped by a 58-year-old Chinese woman in a massage parlor.

Some Black Lives Matters activists are calling for a ban on “stop and frisk” warrantless searches for drugs, guns, or other prohibited items. But some “Defund the Police” activists also favor government prohibitions of private firearms. It is as if they were seeking to formally enact the old slogan: “When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.”

Much of the media coverage is whooping up the recent wave of protests, perhaps hoping to stir public rage to support sweeping new government edicts. According to Washington Post assistant editor Robert Gebelhoff,

It would be a mistake to try to resolve the problems with police behavior without also acknowledging and addressing America’s epidemic of gun violence. Police reform and gun reform go hand in hand. Reducing the easy availability of guns would not eliminate the problems with policing in America nor end unwarranted killings, but it would help.

After heavily armed government agents forcibly confiscate a couple hundred million privately owned guns, the police won’t worry about any resistance and can behave like perfect gentlemen. Repealing most gun laws would produce a vast increase in self-reliance, especially in urban areas where police dismally fail to protect residents. But few street protestors are making that demand.

Many “Defund the Police” advocates presume that poverty is the cause of crime and that that shifting tax dollars from police budgets to social programs and handouts will automatically reduce violence. The Great Society programs launched by President Lyndon Johnson vastly increased handouts on a similar assumption. Instead, violent crime skyrocketed, especially in inner cities where dependence on government aid was highest. “The increase in arrests for violent crimes among blacks during the 1965–70 period was seven times that of whites,” as Charles Murray noted in his 1984 book Losing Ground.

Many advocates of defunding the police believe that a universal basic income, along with free housing and other services, would practically end urban strife. The history of Section 8 housing subsidies provides a stunning rebuke to such naïve assumptions. Concentrations of Section 8 recipients routinely spur crime waves that ravage both the peace and property values of their neighbors. A 2009 study published in the Homicide Studies academic journal found that in Louisville, Memphis, and other cities violent crime skyrocketed in neighborhoods where Section 8 recipients resettled after leaving public housing.

“Defund the Police” demands are already being translated by politicians into a justification for additional spending for social services or the usual sops. In Montgomery County, Maryland, police chiefs issued a statement announcing that they were “outraged” over George Floyd’s killing and then pledged to “improve training in cultural competency for our officers.” Elsewhere, politicians and police chiefs are talking about relying more on mental health workers to handle volatile situations. Radio host Austin Petersen predicted that the George Floyd protest “reforms” would result in “more social programs meant to give jobs to liberal white women.” Author and filmmaker Peter Quinones deftly captured the likely reality with a meme where Minneapolis police were renamed the Tactical Social Workers and still looking hungry to kick ass.

Politicians are claiming to have seen the light thanks to the Floyd protests. Floyd was killed, because politicians at many state and local levels have dismally failed to constrain the lethal power of police. There was nothing to stop politicians from banning the vast majority of no-knock raids, or torpedoing the perverse “qualified immunity” doctrine concocted by the Supreme Court, or repealing the even more perverse “Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights” that can convey a license to kill. One of the most powerful members of the House of Representatives, Eliot Engel (D-NY), embodied the political reality when he was caught on a hot mike: “If I didn’t have a primary, I wouldn’t care” about denouncing the George Floyd killing. It is unclear how much longer other politicians will pretend to give a damn.

Police have too much power, because politicians have too much power. There is little chance that the George Floyd protests and riots will reverse the criminalization of daily life. How many “Defund the Police” activists are also calling for a radical rollback of politicians’ prerogatives to punish almost any activity they disapprove? There will be some reforms and plenty of promises, but as long as cops have pretexts to harass and assail millions of peaceful Americans every day, the outrages will not end. Until protestors realize that the problem is Leviathan, not the local police chief, oppression will continue.

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The Solutions To Police Brutality Politicians Aren’t Giving You | The Libertarian Institute

Posted by M. C. on June 6, 2020

https://libertarianinstitute.org/articles/the-solutions-to-police-brutality-politicians-arent-giving-you/

by

Since the George Floyd protests began last week, they have since morphed into a much broader movement which is now exposing a problem this country has suffered from for a long time. The system of law enforcement in this country has morphed into a militarized standing army, preying on the poor, and rife with corruption. Naturally, people are pissed.

As we have stated from the beginning of the riots, this reaction was inevitable. Minorities and the poor have been pushed into a corner and ignored as the state preyed on them through a system of extortion and violence. One can only be ignored for so long before they eventually lash out.

Remember when football players were peacefully protesting by taking a knee, and the country—including the Commander in Chief—collectively lost their minds telling them to shut up and sit down? Trump even called for them to be fired for this. Now, because these folks were ignored and told to shut up during their peaceful protests, the inevitable non-peaceful protests have begun.

For decades there has been a perfect storm brewing in this country as minorities and poor people have their doors kicked in and are terrorized by cops during botched raids for substances deemed illegal by the state and watch helplessly as their family members die in video after video at the hands of cops. Now, we have record unemployment, lockdowns, cops murdering people on video and facing no immediate charges, and those in charge sit at the top and point fingers.

Because the system will always refuse to accept responsibility for the situation it has forced onto the people, the blame game always comes next. Instead of realizing the error of their ways, government is now blaming the riots on Antifa, White Nationalists, the Alt-right, “thugs,” and any other scapegoat they can find to blame besides taking responsibility. They are even blaming Russia now. You cannot make this up.

Naturally, this will never lead to any positive change. It will only prolong suffering, create more divide, and perpetuate a system of injustice for decades to come. Those who want to incite peaceful change, however, have been pushing these ideas out for a long time. Now, people may finally listen.

To lower the likelihood of future chaos, America’s system of law enforcement needs radical change. Instead of threatening to execute suspected looters with no due process—the discussion we should be having right now is how to fix this broken system. It is not difficult, it is based in logic and reason, and its effects would be significantly felt almost overnight.

Over the years, TFTP has been proposing these solutions and below we have compiled a list of five main actions that could affect this much needed change, right now.

The first and most significant solution to this pain and suffering would be to end the war on drugs—today. Legalize every substance out there.

Richard Nixon, in his effort to silence black people and antiwar activists, brought the War on Drugs into full force in 1973. He then signed Reorganization Plan No. 2, which established the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Over the course of five decades, this senseless war has waged on. At a cost of over $1 trillion—ruining and ending countless lives in the process—America’s drug war failed, miserably, and has created a drug problem that is worse now than ever before.

This is no coincidence.

For years, those of us who’ve been paying attention have seen who profits from this inhumane war—the police state and cartels.

The reason why the drug war actually creates a drug and violence problem is simple. And those who profit most from the drug war—drug war enforcers and cartels—all know it. When the government makes certain substances illegal, it does not remove the demand. Instead, the state creates crime by pushing the sale and control of these substances into the illegal black markets. All the while, demand remains constant.

We can look at the prohibition of alcohol and the subsequent mafia crime wave that ensued as a result as an example. The year 1930, at the peak of prohibition, happened to be the deadliest year for police in American history. 300 police officers were killed, and innumerable poor people slaughtered as the state cracked down on drinkers.

Outlawing substances does not work.

Criminal gangs form to protect sales territory and supply lines. They then monopolize the control of the constant demand. Their entire operation is dependent upon police arresting people for drugs because this grants them a monopoly on their sale.

It is incredibly racist too. The illegality of drug possession and use is what keeps the low-level users and dealers in and out of the court systems, and most of these people are poor black men. As Dr. Ron Paul has pointed out, black people are more likely to receive a harsher punishment for the same drug crime as a white person.

This revolving door of creating and processing criminals fosters the phenomenon known as Recidivism. Recidivism is a fundamental concept of criminal justice that shows the tendency of those who are processed into the system and the likelihood of future criminal behavior.

The War on Drugs takes good people and turns them into criminals every single minute of every single day. The system is set up in such a way that it fans the flames of violent crime by essentially building a factory that turns out violent criminals.

It also creates unnecessary police interactions—disproportionately carried out on black people—which leads to resentment, harassment, civil rights violations, and even death. When drugs are legal, there are far fewer doors to kick in, fines to collect, profit prisons to fill, and money to steal.

Secondly, we need to end qualified immunity for police. Read the rest of this entry »

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Joint Law Enforcement Task Forces are Creating a National Police State

Posted by M. C. on April 26, 2020

This jurisdictional neverland also allows members of these task forces to escape accountability or punishment when they use excessive force, destroy property, or simply engage in sloppy police work. Balko’s article chronicles the story of a man who was beaten senseless after undercover members of a joint task force mistook him for a wanted individual. The state and federal law enforcement officers both dodged prosecution by playing ping-pong with state and federal jurisdictions.

Ironically, the Obama administration couldn’t even conduct a cost-benefit study on joint police task forces because records were almost nonexistent.

https://libertarianinstitute.org/articles/joint-law-enforcement-task-forces-are-creating-a-national-police-state/

by

Through the proliferation of joint law enforcement task forces, the federal government is creating a national police force that operates in a legal twilight zone with little or no oversight.

Law enforcement officers from various state, local and federal law enforcement agencies make up these joint task forces. The concept evolved out of the unconstitutional “War on Drugs” launched by President Richard Nixon. The first multi-jurisdictional task forces were put together in the 1970s.

Dan Baum chronicled the evolution of these multi-jurisdictional police forces in his book, Smoke and Mirrors: The War on Drugs and the Politics of Failure. Radley Balko summarized Baum’s description of the origins of these task forces in a Washington Post article writing, “Nixon wanted ‘strike forces’ that could kick down doors and put the fear of God into drug offenders without burdensome hurdles like the Fourth Amendment or the separation of powers.”

Initially, many local law enforcement agencies weren’t interested in getting in bed with federal cops and were wary of the aggressive tactics employed by the joint task forces. But the feds used federal grants and asset forfeiture money to bribe reticent departments and incentivize participation. The number of joint task forces grew exponentially in the 1980s and 1990s. The deployment of these task forces also expended beyond the “war on drugs.”

Today, you will find hundreds of joint state-federal task forces across the U.S. Just consider this list of task forces in the Pittsburgh area alone.

  • Anti-Terrorism Advisory Council (ATAC)
  • Crimes Against Children Task Force
  • FBI Opioid Task Force
  • Greater Pittsburgh Safe Streets Task Force
  • J-CODE (Joint Criminal Opioid DarkNet Enforcement Team)
  • Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit
  • Pittsburgh Financial Crimes and Electronics Task Force
  • Western Pennsylvania Fugitive Task Force
  • Western Pennsylvania Violent Crimes Task Force

As of 2016, the DEA oversaw or participated in 271 anti-drug task forces across the U.S. Through a program called Project Safe Neighborhood, the Department of Justice ran another 86 taskforces as of 2018. The FBI administers 160 violent gang task forces.

The U.S. Marshalls run 60 Fugitive Task Forces. The ATF oversees the National Explosives Task Force and forms task forces for specific investigations. According to Balko, the U.S. Attorney General runs 18 task forces through the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force program. And then there are the countless temporary joint task forces created every year for special investigations and law enforcement initiatives.

Due to their nature, joint task forces operate in a legal twilight zone that gives them wide latitude. As Balko explained, they often go about their business with little or no oversight. Often, it’s impossible to identify any local officials overseeing their work. And even when somebody is technically in charge of the task force, they often give it free rein.

With little oversight, they have a record of overstepping and misdeeds, from excessive force to shootings, to mistaken raids, to straight-up corruption.”

This jurisdictional neverland also allows members of these task forces to escape accountability or punishment when they use excessive force, destroy property, or simply engage in sloppy police work. Balko’s article chronicles the story of a man who was beaten senseless after undercover members of a joint task force mistook him for a wanted individual. The state and federal law enforcement officers both dodged prosecution by playing ping-pong with state and federal jurisdictions. As Balko illustrates, In practice, joint task forces can “pick whichever laws — state or federal — afforded them the most power and the least accountability.”

Ironically, the Obama administration couldn’t even conduct a cost-benefit study on joint police task forces because records were almost nonexistent. According to those conducting the study, “Not only were data insufficient to estimate what task forces accomplished, data were inadequate to even tell what the task forces did as routine work.”

There are other pernicious consequences resulting from the rise of joint police task forces.

Local police can circumvent strict state asset forfeiture laws by claiming cases are federal in nature due to the participation in a joint task force. Under these arrangements, state officials simply hand cases over to a federal agency, participate in the case, and then receive up to 80 percent of the proceeds.

And the money and power that comes when local cops partner up with the feds incentives local police to focus on “national” priorities such as the war on drugs, federal gun control and “anti-terrorism” efforts instead of prioritizing more routine local policing such as murder, rape and property crime.

We also see the influence of these task forces in the state legislative process. Police lobbyists often oppose warrant requirements, limits on state and local cooperation with federal surveillance, prohibitions on the state enforcement of unconstitutional federal gun control, asset forfeiture reform, and other laws blocking state enforcement of unconstitutional federal laws because they don’t want to jeopardize “our federal partnerships.” In other words, their relationships with their “federal partners” trumps the Constitution.

The federal government was never intended to exercise “police powers” in the first place. The Constitution only defines four federal crimes – treason, piracies and felonies committed on the high Seas, counterfeiting, and crimes against the law of nations. The federal government also has criminal jurisdiction within Washington D.C. and its other enclaves.

The creation of every other federal crime violates the Constitution.

In other words, virtually the entire federal law enforcement apparatus is unconstitutional.

Nevertheless, the federal government is developing a national police force that operates outside of any jurisdictional, legal or constitutional boundaries. Joint task forces are a threat to liberty. States should simply withdraw.

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